Innovation Challenge Blog

Couldn’t Make it to Demo Day? Here’s What You Missed!

Just after 10:30 this morning, from the main stage at Health Datapalooza IV in Washington, DC, the Sanofi US 2013 Data Design Diabetes Innovation Challenge – Prove It! Demo Day kicked off to a room full of healthcare enthusiasts, government officials, industry experts, and innovators. Over 2,000 participants signed up to attend Health Datapalooza, the premier health data event of the year, and the room was packed to the brim when the , CEO of the Health Data Consortium (HDC) took to the stage.

Spradlin started off the day’s events by quoting Kurt Vonnegut, who said, “I want to live out on the edge, because out on the edge, I can see things you can’t see from the center.” He went on to note that the HDC engages in challenges because, in his words, “They keep us on the edge.” Spradlin thanked Sanofi US for sponsoring the challenge, noting that challenges like Data Design Diabetes live at the edge of innovation, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in healthcare.

, CEO of Luminary Labs, then moved to the stage, beginning by noting that, “We’re living in a time in which the actors in our healthcare system can be both the beneficiaries and the benefactors.” Never has the ecosystem been more ripe for innovation, with an abundance of resources and new ideas to drive lasting change. Holoubek then dropped an impressive fact on the crowd: Past participants of the Sanofi US Data Design Diabetes Innovation Challenge have collectively raised $23MM in capital. Wow!

Allazo Health was the first finalist team to hit the stage. Cliff Jones, CEO, explained how the team uses data to predict which patients won’t take their medicine and determine the best way to encourage those patients to follow a prescribed routine. He noted that non-adherence is a $290 billion problem today, and that the team combines big data and analytics with industry expertise to create an individualized analytics service. The Allazo Health Adherence Forecast predicts the future behavior of any patient by learning directly from that patient and from data about other patients with similar demographics and behavioral profiles. Jones noted that while the team’s solution targets middle-aged and elderly patients, the team spent time learning from people who had Type I diabetes as children, to learn about they could apply their technology to children and their caregivers as well.

Paul Sandberg, from Connect & Coach, was up next, and started by posing a question to the audience, “Would you prefer to meet your personal trainer at the gym or at the hospital?” The answer is simple. We should be sending people who need nutrition counseling to the supermarket, he asserted, noting that in a recent survey, 30% of supermarkets indicated that they actually want  to be providing nutrition counseling to their customers. Connect & Coach does just that; as Sandberg described, the team’s solution shifts nutrition counseling out into the community. In his words, “we have more than an app, we have an ecosystem,” for keeping people engaged with their nutrition and health.

MediSapien followed up next, with James Maisel, MD, starting off by noting that, ”There is no population that needs more data than diabetic patients.” The team indicated that 1.2 billion unstructured health records, are “dark matter” that is inaccessible to drive new insight to help patients. MediSapien’s clinical data repository unlocks this data, making sense of it, in order to identify people with symptoms of diabetes who are undiagnosed, giving critical data about those people to healthcare providers who can intervene with resources to delay the onset of diabetes.

Nuduro was the next team to present, and began by sharing the team’s three-pronged approach to improving diabetes care: take control, get personal, get connected. Nuduro’s web and mobile platform fits seamlessly into someone’s life, allowing patients to self-report energy level and glucose level prior to a meal, tying this data to food consumption to help people make better choices and lead healthier lives. It’s the “Pandora of Food”. Nuduro follows up post-meal with a text message, as a non-obtrusive way to collect data, to help patients understand what foods work well for them. Finally, the team noted that it’s often tough for patients with diabetes to find people in their lives who can relate to the unique challenges they face. Nuduro connects patients with people who can help celebrate their successes and overcome struggles. The team closed by sharing that they are focused on partnering with healthcare systems, doctors and dieticians to create positive health outcomes.

GoCap’s James White closed the finalist team presentations, describing how the team hopes to make diabetes treatment more efficient and effective. White noted that in the EU and US, over 10 million people living with diabetes use insulin injection pens, often injecting multiple times per day. White asserted that tracking data around when and why the patients use insulin injections is currently a cumbersome process, that relies on manual reporting methods. Data that could often be incredibly valuable to healthcare providers is lost during this process. To solve this problem, GoCap is the first wireless tracking monitor for insulin injection pens. Injection data is passed to a patient’s mobile phone from the insulin pen cap for real-time monitoring and data trends that can be shared with clinicians.

Throughout the presentations, judges {insert names + links to Twitter handles} were at the ready, asking tough questions that kept the finalist teams on their toes, probing for more information about each solution. Twitter was abuzz as hundreds of people tuned into the livestream and people watching along at Health Datapalooza shared insight from the presentations.

The energy around Demo Day is just getting started. Help decide the Fan Favorite by sharing your favorite team by text or Twitter to cast your vote. Voting will remain open on June 3rd until 6:00 PM EST:

  • TEXT: 22333 the name of your favorite team

  • TWEET: the name of your favorite team: AllazoEngine, ConnectCoach, GoCap, MediSapien, Nuduro

The excitement continues tomorrow morning when the Fan Favorite is announced, and the overall winner of the 2013 Data Design Diabetes Innovation Challenge – Prove It! is announced and awarded $100,000 to further develop its solution. Follow to stay tuned for the news!