Five Independence Blue Cross associates won as finalists at the 2016 Thomas Jefferson University Health Hack. More than 300 students, entrepreneurs, developers, designers, engineers, and healthcare professionals participated in the weekend event held November 4 – 6. Working in teams, the entrants pitched, prototyped, and presented their new ideas to improve health care to a panel of judges. The Smart Pump team, led by Independence associate Regina Seufert, a nurse health coach, won in the Connected Health category for designing a safety feature that could be applied to many medical devices, such as an IV pump, to decrease the risk of contamination.
Another team, BeHealthior, was a second place finalist among 15 entries for demonstrating how patient engagement could increase by integrating voice-activated technology like Echo/Alexa, Google Home Assistant, and smartwatches with individualized health topics. For example, reminders for rescue inhalers, medication refills, medical coverage questions, or emergency calls could be integrated into a mobile or home voice-activated device.
Independence associates Lin Wang, Enterprise Architect; Michael Gould, Data Architect; Harshal Amin, Sr. Clinical Pharmacist; and Violet Jones, Manager, Government Markets comprised that team. The voice activated device would be informed by the member’s personal health record, medical, and pharmacy claims history. The data collected by the device is summarized and sent to doctors to decrease the gap in medication compliance and care.
The same team also won the 2015 Jefferson Health Hack for their idea for a home TV/web application that uses a mat as a scale to monitor people’s weight.
Independence Blue Cross’s Center for Health Care Innovation, Comcast, IBM, and Photon sponsored the Health Hack.