A media moment at #healthdata with US CTO Todd Park and The SchoolFit team

This is how stuff happens around here. One minute you’re sharing stories with a friend whose team happened to win the obesity prevention code-a-thon. The next, you’re watching as the United States Chief Technology Officer Todd Park ( @Todd_Park ) gets a live demo of the app-created-in-2-days by the SchoolFit team, with CBS News looking on.

What was supposed to happen was that Todd was being set up for a scheduled interview right after congratulating the winning team, who are Jay Nagy > Ryan Duryea, dev > Art Nicewick, lead > Christine Kraft ( @ChristineKraft ) > Amanda Robison. However, he became engaged, and quite graciously so, in seeing how the app worked. At that point, the CBS crew decided to take their camera off its tripod and walk over to film what was happening, which is what I photographed.

So, this is proof that winning a code-a-thon can bring great visibility for innovation. And, let’s also celebrate that this is the first Health Data Initiative Forum that had a national TV news crew present (that I know of). This health data thing is REALLY catching on.

Art, Todd, Christine

Oh, and CTO Park did pose for a photo with Art and Christine, too. The rest of the photographs from the moment are below, enjoy. With great thanks to Todd’s team for their flexibility, sense of humor, and focus on a great experience for all.

2012 HealthCampDC and The Walking Gallery bigger.better

DC Health Week HealthCamp – Walking Gallery 13160

It’s always worth a look at where we came from – so thanks to the magic of social media, you can see what the very first Healthcamp DC, in 2008, looked like: #hcdc HealthCamp Washington, DC 2008 and 2011 | Ted Eytan, MD

This year’s HealthCamp DC was the biggest ever. I piloted something new today because it’s trending (thanks to people like Alex Carmichael – @accarmichael and Lauree Ostrofsky – @simplyleap ) – instead of using a buzzer to let people know that their 4 minute time had completed, I gave a hug. It felt okay, in a good way!

The Walking Gallery didn’t exist until 2011, and this one was the biggest ever, as well. Casey Quinlan has the latest jacket – making the cut at #160. I got to wear my #147 , and was happy to see Massive Health’s Andrew Rosenthal (@andrewrosenthal) wear my first jacket as a proxy.

As I look through the tweets of the day (#hcdc and #TheWalkingGallery), I am struck by the generosity and interest in the sharing and encouraging of the heart that these get togethers stimulate. There’s nothing like it. Both events continue to inspire a new generation of health activists, and encourage those who’ve been there all along. We’re all still working together and we all believe everything is possible, because it is.


Mark Scrimshire ( @ekivemark ), Maumi Chatterton ( @MCJhatter ), Regina Holliday ( @ReginaHolliday ) did another great job this year, as did the staff of the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health. When I took my jacket off for the evening, I could only think one thing, which is that Regina is awesome.

Photos below, enjoy

Obesity Prevention Code-A-Thon Finale: From an invididual to a civic mindset

DC Health Week Code-a-Thon 13141 – The School Fit Team – They won!

In the weeks leading up to this weekend’s code-a-thon, conversations like this, with respected community organizers like Greg Bloom were happening:

This is a reasonable question. In some mHealth circles, people feel “App” is a bad word now, because it seems like too simple a solution to complex problems.

Enter this week’s code-a-thon. As I mentioned in the post about the code-a-thon yesterday, there were more than a few experts in social determinants of health and geospatial imaging present, and it made a difference. By the time we got to presenting the final entries, I definitely noticed that teams had learned, slept on things, and created tools that enhanced understanding of community conditions, not just a person’s day to day activities. Since many people believe that that the causes of behavior lie deeper than individuals having information, this is very important.

DC Health Week Code-a-Thon 13129 – School Fit

And the winner is…. School Fit

The School Fit team, which happens to include amongst its ranks Christine Kraft ( @ChristineKraft ) (who said she would just do a drive by on Saturday and now look what happened…). developed a ruby on rails app that integrates location based information along with school fitness rankings to work at a family and community level to combat obesity.

This application, like many others at the code-a-thon, relies on layers of community data to guide people either to civic action, or to understand better the causes of the causes of their conditions. The team is mindful of social differences between schools, so have planned the metrics around educational activities as well as outcomes to assign fit scores to schools. From that perspective, I say, yes, this app could bring neighbors together to solve community problems.

These aren’t the apps that might have been built 1 – 2 years ago, which tells me that (a) people interested in developing apps for health are interested in improving health and are able and willing to learn the most promising avenues to do that (b) the connection to geospatial analysis and social data can change the way people think:

DC Health Week Code-a-Thon – Gratutitous Hot Sauce Shot 13114

I’m impressed!

Alan Viars ( @avairs ) bringing the hot sauce was just icing on the cake. Thanks to Danielle Cass ( @DanielleCass ), The Health 2.0 Challenge Team, Deb Linton ( @pingdeb ), Hemali Thakkur, and the Center for Total Health ( @kptotalhealth ) for the hospitality.

Obesity Prevention Code-a-Thon – the era of Geospatial

Yesterday was the first day of DC Health Data and Innovation Week, which started with the HD&IW Code-a-thon: Preventing Obesity. I have actually been at all 3 Washington DC-based code-a-thons, and can say (and celebrate) a paradigm shift, which is really from the individual, to the spectrum of individual, family, and community. Tyler Norris, the Vice President of Total Health Partnerships for Kaiser Permanente said it well, when he said that we have an opportunity to create a new class of applications that change civic decisions as much as individual decisions:

To help with that development, I counted no less than 4 geospatial experts in attendance yesterday. That’s a first in my code-a-thon history. These individuals have the ability to understand complex mapping and apply it to health and health care, for overall #RxSocial goodness. A great example is the Center for Applied Research and Environmental Systems (CARES), which manages 7,000 GIS layers to help inform our world. Definitely check it out.

Aetna’s Carepass Developer Portal

– The other announcement that happened here at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health ( @kptotalhealth ) was the go-live of Aetna’s Carepass Developer Portal, which offers access to API keys to publicly available data as well as data from Aetna’s own datasets. This includes estimates of costs of care, and…de-identified claims. More announcements are expected this week. It was nice to get a glimpse of this resource, offered by the team that brought it into existence.

Today is Day 2, which is a great thing for a code-a-thon, because teams can sleep on their ideas and figure out how to position then and use data better. I already see a shift from the individual to the civic, from the location-independent to the geospatial. Here are the rest of my photographs from yesterday, enjoy.

Proclaimed! 2012 DC Health Data and Innovation Week – Washington, DC USA

It’s official, Mayor Vincent Gray ( @mayorvincegray ) has proclaimed June 2-7, 2012 as DC Health Data and Innovation Week. What are you waiting for, sign up to come! http://bit.ly/DChealth2012

Definitely one of the most fun errands I have run for my colleague Danielle Cass (@DanielleCass) who worked with the week’s sponsors and the Mayor’s Office to make this happen.

Click here to see the proclamation in full res and embed / use for your innovation needs