What do you do when your doctor says something serious, like, “Make an appointment with a Cardiac electrophysiologist stat” or “here is a prescription for some XYZ.” A what? And a whom?! “Oh, and you’ll need to get an MRI too.” Well, that’s overwhelming. It’s no surprise that about 20 percent of first-time prescriptions are never filled, according to a 2010 Harvard Medical School study1.
Patients often come to a road block and fail to follow through with doctors’ orders because of perceived financial burdens, or simply because they don’t know where to find what they need. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) feels that no one should be at a loss for health care services because they don’t know where to go for affordable services. The RWJF Choosing Care Challenge will therefore bring tech-enabled solutions to the forefront of this issue.
RWJF has teamed up with Catalyst @ Health 2.0 to identify and incentivize the creation of tech that will help patients identify and locate health care services that are locally accessible and covered by their insurance plans. The challenge is calling on innovators, developers, entrepreneurs and other bright minds to create tech enabled tools to help patients figure out what specialists to see, what medication, or tests will be covered by their insurance, or simply what services are nearby. Vericred and PokitDok are each offering APIs providing data on pharmacies, drug costs, eligibility and more. Developers may use these APIs to build tools that offer real time coverage checks for local pharmacies and services. Solutions can be for patients to use on their own, or together with their providers, and can address one or more of the services mentioned above.
In Phase I of the challenge innovators will develop and design novel approaches to the issue. The challenge judges, who bring a wide range of expertise to the table, will evaluate the submissions to determine five teams to move onto Phase II. These finalists will be awarded $5,000 each to create a fully functional application or tool to help guide patients to customized health care services. With over $100,000 in total prizes, we encourage innovators to put their best foot forward and create innovative solutions for patients choosing care.
Check out the challenge website to learn more and pre-register to join the RWJF Choosing Care Challenge by March 13th to get involved. Let’s get patients on the road to better customized care.
Let’s make it simple.
Chelsea Polaniecki is a Program Manager at Catalyst @ Health 2.0.