VA Care Coordination for Improved Outcomes Challenge

Submission Deadline

Submissions are Closed

Contact

Jennifer David

Prizes

  • Phase I: 5 Finalists $5,000 each
  • Phase II: First Place $200,000
  • Second Place $50,000
  • Third Place $25,000

Recent Updates

Congratulations to our Phase I Finalists:

  • Caredinator
  • VC3
  • HSPC
  • Splunk
  • Systems Made Simple

Check back later to find out which finalists win in Phase II!

Background

Create algorithms (methods, processes and/or tools) for identifying redundancies, gaps, conflicts, and interactions among care-plan items and other data.

Veterans receiving health care benefits at the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) interact with clinicians of multiple specialties and professions inside and outside VA. VA desires that each Veteran have a single authoritative plan of care that is shared among all treating clinicians and that facilitates outcomes important to the Veteran. Such a plan of care will help VA deliver on its triple aim of improving the Veteran’s experience, population health, and efficiency.

VA is currently modernizing its electronic health record (EHR) systems to support more modern models that depend on a clear plan of care shared by all members of the care team. This EHR will use a range of structured data including natural language, template free-text, semi-structured, structured but not standardized, and standardized community terminologies. VA will use LOINC for laboratory results, RxNorm for medications, and SNOMed for health conditions, and clinical observations. Other standards may also be used for occupational history and roles.

In addition to traditional EHR data, the new EHR will allow clinicians and patients to specify goals of care and preferences among goals. VA will pursue acquisition of ontologies and knowledge bases that specify associations among interventions, observations, conditions, and goals. VA will also acquire clinical decision support capabilities to include rule and workflow services that may process algorithms in real time. It will also have analytical platforms optimized for cross-patient data analyses using statistical and other types of software for finding and characterizing associations. This platform will also support natural language processing.

Description

This challenge seeks algorithms (methods, processes and/or tools) for identifying redundancies, gaps, conflicts, and interactions among care-plan items and other data. The solutions would be part of an electronic health record used by clinicians or patients. For this challenge, VA is not interested in re-creating a system for interactions among drugs (both over the counter and prescription).

The solutions should focus on at least one of the following health concerns: mental health, chronic pain, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease as well as address how proposed methods would scale to other health concerns.

The solutions should address redundancies and conflicts among care-plan items. VA encourages solutions to address at least one of the other issues: gaps, facilitating interactions, and impeding interactions.

The solutions should address the following care plan items: medications, laboratory-test orders. Goals or parameters for treatment, home-health nursing care plans, inpatient nursing care plans, physical therapy/exercise regimens, and counseling regimens should also be considered.


Methods should account for laboratory results and medical conditions. The solutions may also describe how they would use goals in their methods.

Timeline

  • Registration Opens : April 28, 2015
  • Phase I Deadline: July 13, 2015
  • Phase II Launch: August 10, 2015
  • Phase II Deadline: November 23, 2015
  • Announcement of Winners: December

Evaluation Criteria

The Challenge requires a solution that identifies treatment redundancies and interactions encompassing multiple providers, patient behaviors and prescriptions. Evaluation criteria for judging will include:

  • Potential to resolve care coordination issues and integrate data from the VA as well as external sources (50%)
  • How well the methods scale to produce content (algorithms) for various use cases (25%)
  • Potential and realistic plans for adoption (15%)
  • Innovative and elegant (10%)

Phase II

  • Potential to integrate data from various VA providers as well as external sources such that a single comprehensive plan of care can be established without treatment redundancy and without conflicting treatment goals (25%)
  • How well the methods scale to produce content (algorithms) for various use cases (25%)
  • Potential to impact quality of care and improve outcomes by addressing redundancies and conflicting treatment goals across multiple providers and specialties (25%)
  • Potential and realistic plans for adoption (15%)
  • Innovative and elegant (10%)

Submission Requirements

The challenge will take place in two phases. Phase I will require teams to submit a written description of the proposed solution, while phase II will require working prototypes. The submission requirements for each phase must include (but not limited to):

Phase I:

  • A written description (up to 3 pages) describing the algorithms (methods, processes and/or tools) to identify redundancies, gaps, conflicts, and interactions among care-plans, what data is necessary and how you would incorporate these data
  • A slide deck with illustrations of how the algorithms would be used (no more than 10 slides)

Phase II:

  • A link to a functioning prototype
  • A 7 minute video demonstration
  • A 3-5 summary of your solution with graphs and charts, this should have a emphasis on clinical impact
  • A 3-5 page description of your method

Media Collateral

Informational webinar to learn more about the challenge and questions answered by the VA.

Recording of informational webinar to learn more about the challenge and questions answered by the VA.

Terms & Conditions

OFFICIAL RULES

SPONSOR: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) ("Sponsor").

ADMINISTRATOR: The administrator of the Challenge is Health 2.0, LLC, 350 Townsend Street #403, San Francisco, CA 94107 ("Administrator")

CHALLENGE DESCRIPTION: The Challenge will be conducted in two phases: During Phase 1, five winning Entrants will be selected as finalists from the entries submitted during the Entry Period (as defined below) (each, a “Semi-Finalist” ). During Phase 2, which is currently expected to run from the end of the Entry Period through November 2, 2015, three winning entries will be chosen from among the Finalists; Phase 2 will be open only to the Finalists selected from Phase 1. The entry period for the Challenge will begin at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on April 28, 2015 and ends at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on July 13, 2015 (the “Entry Period” ).

The “VA Care Coordination for Improved Outcomes Challenge” is a call for developers, researchers, and other innovators to create algorithms (methods, processes and/or tools) for identifying redundancies, gaps, conflicts, and interactions among care-plan items and other data. The teams that submit the applications will win: 1.) First Place - $200,000; Second Place - $50,000; Third Place - $25,000 and 2.) Phase I Finalists - $5,000 each. Entry into the Challenge does not constitute entry into any other challenge or promotion, including, without limitation, other similar challenges or promotions offered by Sponsor and/or Administrator. By participating in the Challenge, each entrant unconditionally accepts and agrees to comply with and abide by these Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsor, Administrator, and/or the individual advisors, which shall be final and binding in all respects.

ELIGIBILITY: To be eligible to win a prize under this challenge, an individual or entity: (a) Shall have registered to participate in the competition under the rules promulgated by the Department of Veterans Affairs; (b) Shall have complied with all the requirements under this section; (c) In the case of a private entity, shall be incorporated in and maintain a primary place of business in the United States, and in the case of an individual, participating in a group, shall be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States and 18 years old or older as of the time of entry; and (d) May not be a Federal entity or Federal employee acting within the scope of their employment. An individual or entity shall not be deemed ineligible because the individual or entity used Federal facilities or consulted with Federal employees during a competition if the facilities and employees are made available to all individuals and entities participating in the competition on an equitable basis. Employees of Sponsor, Administrator, each of their affiliates, and/or any other individual or entity associated with the development, evaluation, or administration of the Challenge as well as members of such persons' immediate families (spouses, children, siblings, parents), and persons living in the same household as such persons, whether or not related, are not eligible to participate in the Challenge; (e) Federal grantees may not use Federal funds to develop COMPETES Act challenge applications unless consistent with the purpose of their grant award. (f) Federal contractors may not use Federal funds from a contract to develop COMPETES Act challenge applications or to fund efforts in support of a COMPETES Act challenge submission.

An individual or entity shall not be deemed ineligible because the individual or entity used Federal facilities or consulted with Federal employees during a competition if the facilities and employees are made available to all individuals and entities participating in the competition on an equitable basis.

Entrants must agree to assume any and all risks and waive claims against the Federal Government and its related entities, except in the case of willful misconduct, for any injury, death, damage, or loss of property, revenue, or profits, whether direct, indirect, or consequential, arising from my participation in this prize contest, whether the injury, death, damage, or loss arises through negligence or otherwise.

Entrants must also agree to indemnify the Federal Government against third party claims for damages arising from or related to competition activities.

HOW TO ENTER: To enter: (a) The challenge winner will create algorithms (methods, processes and/or tools) for identifying redundancies, gaps, conflicts, and interactions among care-plan items and other data. (b) go to the website located at www.health2challenge.org (the "Challenge Website"), complete the Official Registration Form to officially register for the competition; (c) prior to the submission deadline you will receive additional instructions to submit your entry, a text description (up to 3 pages) describing methods, processes and/or tools, and an electronic slide presentation describing the submission according to the instructions posted on the Challenge Website. You may only enter as part of a team. Teams must include no less than two (2) people and each team member must be clearly identified on the team's Official Entry Form to be eligible. All participants are required to provide written consent to the rules upon or before submitting an entry. Submissions must be received during the Challenge Period to be eligible. Administrator is the official timekeeper for the Challenge. No substitutions of new versions of Submissions will be accepted under any circumstances once the original Submission is submitted for consideration. In the event of a dispute regarding the identity of the individual or team who actually submitted the entry cannot be resolved to Sponsor's and/or Administrator's satisfaction, the affected entry will be deemed ineligible. Except as otherwise stated in these Official Rules, personal information collected in connection with the Challenge will be used by Sponsor in accordance with Sponsor's privacy policy and by Administrator in accordance with Administrator's privacy policy available on the Website and with any additional consent given by an entrant at the time of entry. All entry information and materials, including any copy of the Submission submitted to Sponsor, become the property of Sponsor and will not be acknowledged or returned. Proof of submission is not considered proof of delivery to or receipt of such entry. Furthermore, Sponsor and Administrator shall have no liability for any Submission that is lost, intercepted, or not received by Sponsor and/or Administrator. Sponsor and Administrator assume no liability or responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, theft, or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of, Submissions.

REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES/INDEMNIFICATION: By participating in the Challenge, each entrant represents, warrants, and covenants as follows: (a) entrant is the sole author, creator, and owner of the Submission; (b) the Submission is not the subject of any actual or threatened litigation or claim; (c) the Submission does not and will not violate or infringe upon the intellectual property rights, privacy rights, publicity rights, or other legal rights of any third party; (d) the Submission does not and will not contain any harmful computer code (sometimes referred to as "malware," "viruses" or "worms"); and (e) the Submission, and entrants use of the Submission, does not and will not violate any applicable laws or regulations, including, without limitation, applicable export control laws and regulations of the U.S. and other jurisdictions. If the Submission includes any third party works (such as third party content or open source code), entrant must be able to provide, upon Sponsor and/or Administrator's request, all appropriate licenses and releases for such third party works. In the event entrant cannot provide all required licenses and releases, Sponsor reserves the right, in Sponsor's sole discretion, to disqualify the applicable Submission, or seek to secure the licenses and releases for Sponsor's benefit and allow the applicable Submission to remain in the Challenge. Entrants will indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Sponsor and Administrator from and against all third party claims, actions, or proceedings of any kind and from any and all damages, liabilities, costs, and expenses relating to or arising from entrant's Submission or any breach or alleged breach of any of the representations, warranties, and covenants of entrant hereunder. Sponsor and/or Administrator reserves the right to disqualify any Submission that Sponsor and/or Administrator, in its sole discretion, deems to violate these Official Rules.

SUBMISSION LICENSE: Each entrant retains title and full ownership in and to their submission. Entrants expressly reserve all intellectual property rights not expressly granted under the challenge agreement. By participating in the challenge, each entrant hereby irrevocably grants to Sponsor and Administrator a limited, non-exclusive, royalty-free, worldwide license and right to reproduce, publicly perform, publicly display, and use the Submission to the extent necessary to administer the challenge, and to publicly perform and publicly display the Submission, including, without limitation, for advertising and promotional purposes relating to the challenge.

PUBLICITY RELEASE: By participating in the Challenge, in addition to any other grants granted herein or which may be granted in any other agreement entered into between Sponsor and/or Administrator, on the one hand, and any entrant in the Challenge, on the other hand, each entrant hereby irrevocably (a) grants to Sponsor and Administrator the right to use such entrant's name, likeness, image, and biographical information in any and all media for any purpose, including, without limitation, advertising and promotional purposes relating to the Challenge and (b) releases Sponsor and Administrator from any liability with respect thereto.

U.S. GOVERNMENT SUPPORT, RIGHTS, AND WAIVER: Sponsor and Administrator are administering the Challenge with the support of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs pursuant to the American COMPETES Reauthorization Act (the "Act"). Subsection (j) of section 24 of the Act establishes that the Government is prohibited from acquiring an interest in intellectual property developed by a participant in a prize competition, such as the Challenge, without the written consent of the participant. Registered participants shall be required to agree to assume any and all risks and waive claims against the Federal Government and its related entities, except in the case of willful misconduct, for any injury, death, damage, or loss of property, revenue, or profits, whether direct, indirect, or consequential, arising from their participation in a competition, whether the injury, death, damage, or loss arises through negligence or otherwise. Participants shall be required to obtain liability insurance or demonstrate financial responsibility, in amounts determined by the head of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, for claims by (a) a third party for death, bodily injury, or property damage, or loss resulting from an activity carried out in connection with participation in a competition, with the Federal Government named as an additional insured under the registered participant's insurance policy and registered participants agreeing to indemnify the Federal Government against third party claims for damages arising from or related to competition activities; and (b) the Federal Government for damage or loss to Government property resulting from such an activity.

WINNER SELECTION/EVALUATION CRITERIA: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs review panel will make selections based upon the following criteria:

Potential to resolve care coordination issues and integrate data from the VA as well as external sources (50%)
How well the methods scale to produce content (algorithms) for various use cases (25%)
Potential and realistic plans for adoption (15%)
Innovative and elegant (10%)

The evaluation criteria are to be applied in the sole discretion of Sponsor and the individual advisors. By participating in the Challenge, each entrant into the Challenge 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 advisors.

NOTICE TO WINNERS: Attempts to notify potential winners will be made using the contact information provided on the winner's Official Entry Form. Sponsor and Administrator are not responsible for e-mail or other communication problems of any kind. If, despite reasonable efforts, a potential winner does not respond within five (5) days of the first notification attempt (or a shorter time as exigencies may require), or if the prize or prize notification is returned as unclaimed or undeliverable to such potential winner, such potential winner will forfeit his or her prize and an alternate winner may be selected. If any potential prize winner is found to be ineligible, or if he or she has not complied with these Official Rules or declines the applicable prize for any reason prior to award, such potential prize winner will be disqualified and an alternate winner may be selected. Sponsor may successively attempt to contact up to two (2) potential prize winners in accordance with such procedure, and if there is still no confirmed prize winner after such attempts have been made, if any, the applicable prize may go unawarded.

ANTICIPATED NUMBER OF ENTRANTS: Many will enter, three winning submissions will be selected. Actual odds of winning depend on the number of eligible entries received. Sponsor and Administrator cannot accurately predict the number of entrants who will participate in the Challenge.

PRIZES: The winning teams will receive: 1.) First Place - $200,000; Second Place - $50,000; Third Place - $25,000 and 2.) Phase I Finalists - $5,000 each.

GENERAL PRIZE CONDITIONS: The potential winner may be required to execute an Affidavit of Eligibility, a Liability Release and (where imposing such condition is legal) a Publicity Release (collectively "Prize Claim Documents). If a winner fails or refuses to sign and return all Prize Claim Documents within five (5) days of Sponsor's and/or Administrator's request (or a shorter time as exigencies may require), the winner may be disqualified and an alternate winner may be selected. No more than the advertised number of prizes will be awarded. Prizes will be delivered only to an address in the U.S. No cash alternative or substitution or transfer of prizes will be allowed, except Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to substitute prizes of comparable value, in whole or in part, for any reason. THE WINNER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR REPORTING AND PAYING ANY INCOME TAXES OR OTHER TAXES THAT MAY APPLY TO ACCEPTING A PRIZE; SPONSOR AND ADMINISTRATOR ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR AND WILL NOT PAY ANY SUCH TAXES.

DATES/DEADLINES: Because of the unique nature and scope of the Challenge, Sponsor and Administrator reserve the right, in addition to those other rights reserved herein, to modify any dates or deadlines set forth in these Official Rules or otherwise governing the Challenge.

GENERAL LIABILITY RELEASE/FORCE MAJEURE: Each entrant agrees that Sponsor and Administrator (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 entrants' acceptance, receipt, possession, use, or misuse of any prize, and (b) have not made any warranty, representation, or guarantee, express or implied, in fact or in law, with respect to any prize, including, without limitation, regarding such prize's merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. Entrants will indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Sponsor and Administrator from and against all third party claims, actions, or proceedings of any kind and from any and all damages, liabilities, costs, and expenses relating to or arising from entrant's participation in the Challenge. Sponsor and Administrator assumes no responsibility for any damage to an entrant's computer system which is occasioned by accessing the 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. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, Sponsor and Administrator are not responsible for incomplete, illegible, misdirected, misprinted, late, lost, postage-due, damaged, or stolen entries or prize notifications; or for lost, interrupted, inaccessible, or unavailable networks, servers, satellites, Internet Service Providers, websites, or other connections; or for miscommunications, failed, jumbled, scrambled, delayed, or misdirected computer, telephone, cable transmissions or other communications; or for any technical malfunctions, failures, difficulties, or other errors of any kind or nature; or for the incorrect or inaccurate capture of information, or the failure to capture any information. Sponsor and Administrator each reserve the right in their sole discretion to disqualify any individual who is found to be tampering with the entry process or the operation of the Challenge or Website or other Challenge-related websites, to be acting in violation of these Official Rules, or to be acting in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with the intent to disrupt or undermine the legitimate operation of the Challenge, or to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any other person, and Sponsor and Administrator each reserve the right to seek damages and other remedies from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. In the event an insufficient number of eligible entries are received or Sponsor and/or Administrator is prevented from awarding the prize or continuing with the Challenge as contemplated herein by any event beyond its control, including, without limitation, fire, flood, natural or man-made epidemic, earthquake, explosion, labor dispute or strike, act of God or public enemy, satellite or equipment failure, riot or civil disturbance, terrorist threat or activity, war (declared or undeclared) or any federal state or local government law, order, or regulation, public health crisis, order of any court or jurisdiction, or other cause not reasonably within Sponsor's control ("Force Majeure"), Sponsor and/or Administrator shall have the right to modify, suspend, or terminate the Challenge. If the Challenge is terminated for Force Majeure before expiration of the Challenge Period, Sponsor and/or Administrator will (if reasonably possible) select a winner from all eligible, non-suspect entries received as of the date of the event giving rise to the termination. These Official Rules cannot be modified or amended in any way except in a written document issued in accordance with the law by a duly authorized representative of both Sponsor and Administrator. The invalidity or unenforceability of any provision of these Official Rules shall not affect the validity or enforceability of any other provision. In the event that any provision is determined to be invalid or otherwise unenforceable or illegal, these Official Rules shall otherwise remain in effect and shall be construed in accordance with their terms as if the invalid or illegal provision were not contained herein.

GOVERNING LAW/JURISDICTION: All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation, and enforceability of these Official Rules or the rights and obligations of entrants, Sponsor and/or Administrator in connection with the Challenge shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of California as applied in the California state courts in San Francisco if a complaint is filed by any party against the Administrator, and by U.S. Federal law as applied in the Federal courts of the District of Columbia if a complaint is filed by any party against the Sponsor

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 #403, San Francisco, CA 94107. Please specify "winners list" or "Official Rules" and the name of the specific Challenge in your request.

Additional Information: General Conditions: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reserves the right to cancel, suspend, and/or modify the Contest, or any part of it, for any reason, at U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' sole discretion. Participation in this Contest constitutes a contestant's full and unconditional agreement to abide by the Contest's Official Rules found at Challenge.gov