People from both sides of the border were part of a "health hackathon" this weekend.

Information technology and health-care professionals came together at Wayne State University in Detroit to brainstorm and design mobile apps to improve patient care.

More than 250 participants signed up for the first-ever Hacking Health Windsor-Detroit conference.

A hackathon is an event in which computer programmers, graphic designers and techies collaborate on innovative projects. The difference with hacking health is that techies team up with doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other health-care professionals and students. The goal is to collaborate and be creative and if a viable idea emerges we'll have the support to help you develop it further.

Hackathons have been held in other cities in Canada, and even internationally, but this is the first one that crossed a border.

"We hope to just provide that environment for people who really want to solve problems in health care, and health care has a lot of them," said Shreya Tekriwal, a founding member of Hacking Health.

Windsor city councillor Irek Kusmierczyk is the director of partnerships with WEtech Alliance, one of the organizers.

"It's about getting that cross-border collaboration, getting communities on both sides working together to take advantage of the fact that we could really be a health tech cluster in North America," he said.

Paul Riser is with TechTown Detroit, the event host.

"We all can do a better job at working together more regionally with our partners across the pond, and we wanted to really forge and show how that can be done with Hacking Health," he said.

Next year, the second Hacking Health Windsor-Detroit conference will be held in our city.