Five years ago heart health expert, Professor Robyn Clark, her research team (Dr Hui Du and PhD student Jinny Tongpeth) and animation and interactive design studio, Monkeystack, teamed up to create Cora and solve a national health crisis. Cardiovascular disease is the single largest killer of Australians. Around 50% of people who suffer one heart attack will have another. What’s strange is that people who have suffered one heart attack are no less likely to be prepared, know what to do, and take the correct actions the next time the warning bells sound.

Together, Robyn, her team and Monkeystack have brought together years of health, education and game design research to develop Cora: an interactive app that guides users through information and quizzes, teaching people who have had a heart attack what to do if the symptoms appear a second time.

Patients currently receive a bedside explanation from a nurse and a 140-page booklet from the Heart Foundation. But the message isn’t sinking in and nurses face challenges like too little time available for patient education, low patient health literacy, language barriers and patient apathy. With all these pressures, nurses could never be as word-perfect, multilingual or generous with their time as Cora.