ONC and conference organizer Health 2.0 are awarding prizes to winning developers who can design applications that monitor heart conditions and cull data on population health.
Conference organizer Health
2.0 and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information
within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have launched two new
developer challenges for health care: "One in a Million Hearts" and
"PopHealth Tools Development."
The challenges are part of
the Investing in Innovation (i2) program, which was formed under the American
Competes Reauthorization Act of 2010. The act authorizes federal agencies to
create challenges to further innovation, Wil Yu, special assistant for innovations
and research at ONC, told eWEEK.
and the Defense Department have formed similar challenges.
ONC plans to run 30
challenges over the next two years, Yu said. He hopes to bring collaboration
among developers and medical students.
communities will be new sources of creative thought in the health care
space," Yu said.
With i2, the Obama
administration aims to use technology to bring better outcomes from health
care and allow patients to self-manage their health.
"The i2 program is a
revolutionary initiative that is fundamentally transforming the way the federal
government spurs innovation in the U.S. health care system," Indu Subaiya,
co-chair of Health 2.0, said in a statement.
Founded in 2007, Health 2.0
is an organizer of conferences
highlighting health care IT innovations.
"One in a Million
Hearts" calls on developers to build an application for patients to use to
manage cardiovascular disease. The application would allow patients to monitor
their blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
"The user provides
information, and the application gives them answers," Dr. Jean-Luc
Neptune, senior vice president of Health 2.0, told eWEEK.
The application challenge is
connected to the Million Hearts Campaign, which is led by the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
Services (CMS), the National Institutes of Health and the American Heart
From data that users input,
patients receive related information from the AHA and CDC Million Hearts
Websites. As a multidisciplinary challenge, "One in a Million Hearts"
will involve public and private organizations that examine heart health,
The deadline for "One
in a Million Hearts" submissions is Dec. 31. The winner will receive
$50,000, with prizes totaling $75,000.
For the "PopHealth
Tools Development" challenge, developers will draw on the functionality
and datasets of ONC's open-source software service called PopHealth
, which automates health care
providers' reporting of meaningful use Stage 1 compliance for electronic
health records (EHRs)
Challenge organizers hope
that developers will produce PopHealth applications that boost patient safety
and quality of care while providing a view of population health data for
Winning developers will be
able to integrate patient data with the PopHealth system and provide ease of
use. The winner of the "PopHealth Tools Development" challenge will
receive $75,000, and prizes will total $100,000.
The deadline for the
"PopHealth Tools Development" challenge is Feb. 3. The submission
period opened for the two latest challenges on Oct. 3.
Future challenges in the i2
program will address health care delivery for areas such as childhood health
and fitness, Yu said. ONC will also want the applications to improve
communications between physicians and patients and integrate with the existing
health care system, he said.
In addition, Health 2.0
plans to hold "codathons" in which developers, designers, researchers
and patients come together for one to two days to develop and hack applications,