Apps for Health: New “Leading Health Indicators App Challenge” Aims to Make It Easier for Americans to Get Healthier

Wil Yu | January 24, 2012

We’re very excited to have launched a new Investing in Innovation challenge partnering with the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion in support of the Healthy People 2020 initiative, which establishes benchmarks for healthy living and provides 10-year goals for improving the health of all Americans.

Designing Apps for Health

On Oct. 31, 2011, we launched the Leading Health Indicators App Challenge. With it, we’ve challenged developers and experts to design applications that make it easy for the public to use and learn from the leading health indicators—that is, the nation’s critical health priorities that have been developed by Healthy People 2020.

The possibilities for what successful apps for health might do are endless. They could include tools that integrate:

  • Health topic areas, measures, and evidence-based resources of interest;
  • Community, county, and state health status comparisons;
  • Real-time communication tools to stay in touch with peers;
  • Educational curricula to teach health promotion and disease prevention; and/or
  • Related news, analyses, and blogs from outside resources.

Apps for health may focus on one or a variety of audiences and purposes. For instance:

  • Helping a social worker meet the prevention needs of her clients by connecting clients with nearby resources and tracking their progress from arranging visits to completing assessments.
  • Creating a simple and effective way for a primary care physician to employ a population health approach to her work, grouping patients according to risk factors, and providing them with relevant evidence-based interventions. This could then integrate with the practice’s electronic health records.
  • Partnering with a university or faculty member to deliver an interactive academic curriculum to students, leveraging multimedia case studies to educate about the leading health indicators and their impact on community health.
  • Helping an exercise therapist work with professional workplaces to integrate physical activity guidelines into her office.

We’re looking for the most innovative approaches to using the leading health indicators and solving the nation’s priority health problems. Multiple prizes will be awarded for submissions—up  to $10,000 and the opportunity to demo at the 2012 National Health Promotion Summit.

Additional Details

Think you have a creative idea? Submissions are due Friday, March 9, 2012. More details can be found at

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