CHCF Decision Aid Upgrade Challenge

Submission Deadline

Submissions are Closed


Jennifer David


  • First Place $5,000
  • Second Place $3,000
  • Third Place $2,000

Winners will also receive design mentorship from Mad*Pow

First Place

TK Design

Team Members

Katherine Martinko, Terumi Hayden

TreatmentTalk by team TK Design transforms the decision aid into a digital format with concise, colorful graphs to describe the possible outcomes of various treatment options for lung cancer. The tool allows for patients to include family members and friends in their decision making process as well as list personal goals for their treatment plan. Patients can also print out a summary to provide continued support outside of the doctor’s office.

Second Place

Team LaSenda

Team Members

Bill Schmidt, Lisa Schmidt

Team LaSenda developed a tablet-based tool that acts as a checklist and a means to draw the patient and his physician into a meaningful discussion. The main program is physician-led shared resource, but there are also separate areas for both the physician and patient to explore independently. The physician can then walk through the decision aid during a side-by-side shared discussion. This platform also allows for EHR integration to customize the decision aid for each patient.

Third Place

RPM Innovations, LLC

Team Members

Kalyan Narayanan

RPM Innovations, LLC combined clear and simple infographics to represent outcomes and benefits among various treatment options with video modules to further educate the user.


Let’s help people with cancer make informed choices
Can you design a tool or experience that increases patient understanding about late-stage lung cancer treatment and supportive care options? Bring your empathy and your creativity to help us develop new approaches to designing decision aids that put patients at the center of care.

Using design thinking to improve decision aids

In studies of American cancer patients, most report a preference for detailed information about their disease and prognosis and that this information be given in a direct and honest manner. Studies also show patients from different cultural backgrounds differ in their need for prognostic information and how they would like to receive it. Despite the vital importance of prognostic information for decision making, today many patients have very little understanding of their prognosis, treatment options, or other sources of support. In fact, a study published in 2014 found that only 16% of patients with metastatic cancers had an accurate awareness of their prognosis.

People need decision aids to help them understand their disease trajectory and consider what is important to them when deciding among different treatment options. Providing information on treatment options, possible side effects, success rates, and supportive care options empowers patients to make choices that align with their personal values and goals—and get better, more personalized care. In scenarios where patients need to choose between quality and quantity of life, objective resources can help patients make the choice that’s right for them.

Today, many decision aids are paper-based guides used by providers in clinical settings to support their discussion of treatment options with patients. These aids often lack points for patient engagement and are used inconsistently, typically in a didactic or instructive fashion.

When it comes to treating advanced lung cancer, most decision aids fail to demonstrate the limitations of multiple rounds of chemotherapy, and these aids often overlook the benefits of palliative care and other supportive services.

We think people deserve better. Your designs can pave the way.


Design a Decision Aid that supports the conversation between patients and doctors about chemotherapy and supportive care options for treating advanced lung cancer.

The California HealthCare Foundation is a nonprofit grantmaking philanthropy that acts as a catalyst to fulfill the promise of better health care for all Californians. CHCF has partnered with HxRefactored and Thomas J. Smith, MD, Professor of Oncology, Johns Hopkins Hospital to seek out new kinds of decision aids that can engage patients in their treatment decisions—and offer clear, easy-to-understand ways to consider their options.

Your challenge is to develop an innovative design for a new kind of decision aid that support the conversation between patients and providers about chemotherapy options for the treatment of advanced lung cancer. Consider the following:

Patients need to be shown a roadmap of what is coming. They need to be told early on that potential benefits may outweigh risks, but, depending on response and symptom management, risks may later outweigh benefits. They need to know how likely it is their cancer will respond, shrink, stay the same or grow and what the rare and common side effects may be. Patients need to know what the average survival is and they also need to understand that half of people will live longer and half will live shorter than the average; patients need to consider how they want to live in either case, and what they want their focus of living to be.1

Successful solutions will:

  • Present information in a format that increases the patient understanding of the various treatment and supportive care options
  • Help patients understand the risks and benefits of chemotherapy
  • Be visually engaging and comprehensible at a 5th to 8th grade literacy level
  • Be easily used by oncologists in the office setting
  • Refer patients to resources for advanced care planning and palliative care independent of the treatment option selected
  • Bonus points: Include features that allow patients to leave feedback about how effective, useful, and/or helpful the decision aid was for them

Getting started
We encourage you to explore novel ways of presenting data and statistics to patients and to incorporate user research into your design:

  • Review the Resources section below for the challenge data set and key references to inform and support your design
  • Be sure to integrate the challenge data set into your solutions Decision Aid - First Line, Decision Aid - Second Line, Decision Aid - Third Line
  • As costs related to treatment options vary based on insurance and location, pricing information need not be included in the design
  • Designs should include the content that is available in the challenge data set. Links to existing content, materials, and guides that provide additional supportive information for patients and families are permitted and should be cited.


  • Registration Opens: Thursday, April 2
  • Informational Webinar: Monday, April 20, 11AM PT
  • Final Submission Deadline: Friday, May 29, 11:59PM PT
  • Evaluation Period Begins: Friday, June 5
  • Announcement of Winner: late June

Review Panel

Evaluation Criteria

A panel of judges will evaluate each submission based on how well it addresses the problem, consideration of patient needs, and overall quality. Participants are encouraged to describe their user research in their submissions.

Core Criteria:

  • Serves as a roadmap for patients to understand and engage in decision-making about chemotherapy and supportive care options for advanced lung cancer
  • Accurately represents the data provided in the challenge data set
  • Can be easily incorporated into an office visit workflow
  • Represents creativity and innovation in this domain

Bonus points: include a feature that allows patients to leave feedback about how effective/useful/helpful the decision aid was for them.

Submission Requirements

Proposed solutions may take a variety of forms - including but not limited to mobile apps, websites, and paper or other non-digital solutions. Submit whatever you need to convey your idea, within the following guidelines:

  • REQUIRED: Design brief of 500 words or less summarizing your solution and process, with a focus on the evaluation criteria outlined above. Include citation of any pre-existing tools or question sets leveraged.
  • REQUIRED: PowerPoint slideshow (10 slides max) that visually communicates your ideas and design process.
  • EXTRA CREDIT: A working prototype, or any other supplemental documentation that helps communicate your ideas and design process.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Must be a U.S. resident, business, or non-profit entity to enter.
  • You may enter as an individual or team. Please only one submission per entrant.
  • Employees of the California HealthCare Foundation, Mad*Pow, and Health 2.0 are not eligible to participate.

Media Collateral

Slide deck for informational webinar, Dr. Thomas Smith discusses the need for better decision aid tools to assist oncologists when they speak to patients about treatment options.

Recording of webinar, Dr. Thomas Smith discusses the need for better decision aid tools to assist oncologists when they speak to patients about treatment options.

Terms & Conditions


1. Administrators: The Administrators of the Challenge are Health 2.0, LLC, 350 Townsend Street, #403, San Francisco, CA 94107 and Mad*Pow Media Solutions LLC, 27 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801 ("Administrators")

2. Challenge: The California HealthCare Foundation Design Challenge entitled CHCF Decision Aids Update Challenge (the “Challenge”) will occur from April 2 – May 29, 2015 as part of the 2015 HxRefactored Conference in accordance with the guidelines below. The California HealthCare Foundation, 1438 Webster Street #400, Oakland, CA 94612, (the “Sponsor”) is the Sponsor of this Challenge.

3. Eligibility: The Challenge is open only to (a) business and nonprofit entities formed and maintaining a principal place of business in the United States and (b) individuals and teams of no more than five individuals, who are (i) citizens or permanent residents of the United States and (ii) of the legal age of majority, at the time of entry, to form valid contracts in their respective jurisdiction of legal residence (each individual, each team, each individual member of a team, and each entity is referred to as an “Entrant” in these Rules). Affiliated Persons (as defined below) are ineligible to participate in the Challenge.

Special note to Entrants who are entering as part of a team: If an Entrant enters as part of a team, the Entrant understands and agrees that submission of an Entry constitutes a representation and warranty by Entrant that all of the members of the team have read and accepted the Rules. Furthermore, an Entrant that is part of a team understands and agrees that if his/her team is selected to receive an Award (as defined below), the team is responsible for ensuring the funds are appropriately distributed to each member of the team and each member of the team must agree upon the method of payment. In addition, once a team has registered, the team may not add, remove, or substitute members or otherwise change the composition of the team for the duration of the Challenge. Finally, the eligibility of the Entrant is tied to the team's eligibility; if one member of the team does not comply with these Rules or is disqualified, the team as a whole will be disqualified.

Special note to Entrants who are entering as an entity: If an Entrant is entering as part of an entity, the Entrant warrants that the appropriate officers, executives, managers, or other persons who have the authority to approve Entrant’s Entry into this Challenge have approved the Entrant’s Entry and the Entrant understands that these terms will be binding on both the Entrant and his/her entity. Furthermore, the Entrant understands that if the Entrant enters without obtaining the appropriate approval, the Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, disqualify the Entrant’s Entry. Finally, if an entity is selected to receive an Award, an officer or person entitled to bind the entity will be required to validate that the Entrant is entitled to receive the Award on the behalf of the entity and the officer or person entitled to bind the entity must provide the appropriate information for payment of the Award.

Entrants who are determined at any time to have violated the eligibility criteria will be disqualified from the Challenge.

As used herein, the term “Affiliated Persons” means (a) the trustees, directors, officers, shareholders, members, employees, clients (with respect to the Administrators only), contractors, agents, representatives and affiliates of the Sponsor, the Administrators and any entity associated with the funding, administration, or processing of the Challenge and (b) the members of the Immediate Family (as defined below) of any of the persons identified in the foregoing clause (a). The term “Immediate Family” includes a person’s spouse/domestic partner and the parents, siblings, children and grandchildren of the person and his or her spouse/domestic partner.

4. How to Enter: The entry period for the Challenge will begin at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time on Apr 2, 2015 and end at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time on May 29, 2015 (the “Entry Period”). Teams can enter the Challenge by visiting the Health 2.0 Developer Challenge website at, reviewing these Official Rules, and registering a submission by submitting the Official Entry Form according to the instructions posted on the Challenge Website. Each Submission entered into the Challenge must meet the "Submission Requirements" described by the challenge Sponsor (any Submission that, in Sponsor's sole discretion, violates the following criteria will be disqualified). Once a submission is made, a team is prohibited from making any changes or alterations to the product described in its submission until the evaluation of the entries is completed.

5. Awards: The following awards are available to be awarded in this Challenge (each, an “Award”):

$5,000 – First Place
$3,000 – Second Place
$2,000 – Honorable Mention

Three (3) winning teams (the “Winning Teams”) will be determined by the judges, in the judges’ sole discretion. The Awards will be divided equally by the number of people on the Winning Team and distributed to each individual (a “Winner”) on the team. Neither the Administrators nor the Sponsor shall be responsible for mediating disputes that arise relating to award distribution. EACH WINNER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL TAXES AND FEES ASSOCIATED WITH RECEIPT AND/OR USE OF THE AWARD. All Award details are at Sponsor’s sole discretion. The Award is non-transferable. The Award will be fulfilled 4-6 weeks after the Winners are notified and each potential winner has been verified and complied with these Official Rules. Actual odds of winning depend on the number of eligible Teams.

6. Challenge Description: Each Team will be presented with the Challenge Description, which will be made available at the start of the Challenge or prior to the start of the Challenge, in Sponsor’s sole discretion. The Challenge Description will contain a more complete description of the project as well as the materials that will be available for participants, but will generally require participants to consider how to empower patients to take an active role in recognizing, chronicling, and sharing information about hurdles in their life that impact their health. During the Challenge, each Team must create and submit a product that responds to the Challenge Description in a way consistent with the Challenge Description (the “Design”). Such Design shall require the production of at least: (1) a brief visual presentation of the Team’s response to the Challenge Description; (2) a written description of the Team’s response to the Challenge Description; and (3) sketches, wireframes, visual compositions, working prototypes, or other user-interface designs that respond to the Challenge Description. Sponsor may, at its sole discretion, require the production of more elements to compose the Design, as described in the Challenge Description. At the end of the Challenge, qualified judges, determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion, will review the Designs of each Team, and will choose three (3) Winning Teams.

7. Copyright: Entrant warrants that the Entrant is the sole author and owner of the submission, and that the submission: a) completely originates with the Challenge; b) does not contain the intellectual property of another party; c) does not infringe upon any copyright or any other rights of any third party; e) does not contain material that is inappropriate, indecent, obscene, hateful, tortuous, defamatory, or offensive (as determined by Sponsor); and f) does not contain material that is unlawful, in violation of or contrary to any laws or regulations.

8. Intellectual Property Rights: Each participant of each Team, by submitting any Design, irrevocably grants to Sponsor a royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable license to use, reproduce, modify, edit, adapt, publish, create derivative works from, and display such Design in whole or in part, on a worldwide basis, and to incorporate it into other works, in any form, media or technology now known or later developed, including for promotional or marketing purposes, and without further compensation to you or any other person or entity. If requested, each participant of each Team will sign any documentation that may be required for Sponsor or its designees to exercise its rights under these Official Rules. For clarity, each Team’s Design and all rights, including intellectual property rights, title, and interest therein and thereto lie exclusively with each Team or its respective participants. This Agreement is not an agreement of sale, and no title, interest, or intellectual property rights or other ownership of the Design are transferred pursuant to these Rules, except as explicitly stated herein. Neither the Administrators nor the Sponsor shall be responsible for mediating disputes that arise relating to intellectual property ownership.

9. Judging: A panel of judges chosen by the Sponsor (collectively, the “Judges”) will select winning Entries from all eligible Entries based on the following judging criteria:

Core Criteria:

  • Serves as a roadmap for patients to understand and engage in decision-making about chemotherapy and supportive care options for advanced lung cancer
  • Accurately represents the data provided in the challenge data set
  • Can be easily incorporated into an office visit workflow
  • Represents creativity and innovation in this domain

Bonus points: include a feature that allows patients to leave feedback about how effective/useful/helpful the decision aid was for them.

By submitting a Design or participating in the Challenge, each Team acknowledges and agrees that such evaluations may differ from person to person and agrees to be bound by and not challenge the final decisions of Sponsor and the individual judges. The decisions of the judges are final and binding. In the event of a tie, the Team whose Design received the higher score for originality, as determined by the qualified judges, in their sole discretion, will be deemed the Winner. If a potential winner is disqualified for any reason, the Award may be awarded to a runner-up, if any, in Sponsor’s sole discretion.

10. Release: Acceptance of the Award shall constitute and signify the Winner’s agreement and consent that Sponsor and its designees may use the Winner’s name, city, state, biographical information, likeness, Design (including any related video presentations), and/or Award information in connection with the Challenge for promotional, advertising or other purposes, worldwide, in any and all media now known or hereafter devised, including the Internet, without limitation and without further payment, notification, permission or other consideration, except where prohibited by law. Potential winners may be required to complete an Affidavit of Eligibility/Release of Liability and related tax forms, including a 1099 form, and, if legally permissible, a publicity release within ten (10) days of attempted notification. Each Team hereby releases and holds harmless, the Sponsor and its subsidiaries, affiliates, suppliers, distributors, advertising/promotion agencies, and Award suppliers, and its officers, directors, employees and agents (collectively, the “Released Parties”) from and against any claims, damages, liabilities, cost and expenses (including reasonable counsel fees and legal expenses), losses and judgments arising out of or incurred in connection with (a) any breach of these Official Rules; (b) the Design, or use thereof; (c) the acceptance, possession, use or misuse of the Award; or (d) participation in this Challenge or any Challenge related activity. By participating in this Challenge, each Team agrees that the Design conforms to these Official Rules. For clarity, although Sponsor may explore future use of the Design, or future partnerships with any winner, Sponsor shall not be obligated to promote, endorse or otherwise use any Design. Sponsor is not responsible for lost, late, stolen, damaged, incomplete, invalid, un-intelligible, garbled, delayed or misdirected Designs, or any other obstacle complicating submission of any Design during the Challenge. Any Design not submitted by the end of the Challenge shall be void.

11. Liability: Entrant agrees that the Sponsor and Administrators (a) shall not be responsible or liable for any losses, damages, or injuries of any kind (including death) resulting from participation in the Challenge or any Challenge-related activity, or from Entrant’s acceptance, receipt, possession, use, or misuse of any Award, and (b) has not made any warranty, representation, or guarantee, express or implied, in fact or in law, with respect to any Award, including, without limitation, regarding such Award's merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. The Sponsor assumes no responsibility for any damage to an Entrant’s computer system which is occasioned by accessing the Challenge website or other Challenge-related websites or participating in the Challenge, or for any computer system, phone line, hardware, software, or program malfunctions, or other errors, failures, delayed computer transmissions, or network connections that are human or technical in nature.

12. General Conditions: Sponsor reserves the right to cancel, suspend and/or modify the Challenge, or any part of it, if any fraud, technical failures or any other factor impairs the integrity or proper functioning of the Challenge, as determined by Sponsor at its sole discretion. If the Challenge is terminated, the judges may, in their sole discretion, determine the winners from all non-suspect, eligible Designs received up to the time of such action using the judging procedure outlined above. Sponsor, in its sole discretion, reserves the right to disqualify any Team it finds may be tampering with the process or the operation of the Challenge or to be acting in violation of the Official Rules of this or any other promotion or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner and void all associated Designs. Any attempt by any person to deliberately undermine the legitimate operation of the Challenge may be a violation of criminal and civil law, and, should such attempt be made, Sponsor reserves the right to seek damages and other remedies (including attorneys’ fees) from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. Sponsor’s failure to enforce any term of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision. When used herein, the words “includes” and “including” and their syntactical variations shall be deemed followed by the words “without limitation.”

13. Governing Law/Jurisdiction: All issues and questions concerning construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of the Entrant, Sponsor, and/or Administrators in connection with the Challenge, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of California without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of laws, rules, or provisions. Any legal claims arising from or relating to the Challenge or these official rules must be brought in the federal or state courts located in Alameda County, California, and each Entrant hereby consents and waives any objection to jurisdiction of such courts for such disputes.

14. WINNERS LIST/OFFICIAL RULES: To obtain any legally-required winners list (after the conclusion of the Challenge) or a copy of these Official Rules, send a self-addressed envelope with the proper postage affixed to: Health 2.0, LLC, Attn: Health 2.0 Developer Challenges, 350 Townsend Street, San Francisco, CA 94107. Please specify "winners list" or "Official Rules" and the name of the specific Challenge in your request.