Investing in Innovation: ONC and Health 2.0 Launch EHR Accessibility Module Challenge

Health 2.0 and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) are extremely excited to announce the launch of a new Investing in Innovations mobile app challenge, the “EHR Accessibility Module Challenge” aimed at providing people with disabilities with access to their health records.

The 2000 U.S. Bureau of Census indicates that people with disabilities constitute 19.3% of the non-institutionalized population 5 years of age or older. Among adults, individuals with disabilities are four times as likely to report having fair or poor health compared to those without a disability (40% vs. 10%). While this population faces considerable difficulties with accessing and receiving care, health expenditures for people with disabilities are estimated at $400 billion, more than a quarter of all heath expenditures.

Health information technology (HIT) and electronic health records (EHRs) hold great promise in improving the health outcomes and coordination of care for people with disabilities. However, the accessibility and usability of HIT is a matter of serious concern to people of diverse disabilities, including those who have vision, hearing, intellectual, manual dexterity, mental health, developmental and other types of disabilities. Since the disabled population cannot afford to miss out on the multitude of benefits of EHRs, we’re excited to announce the EHR Accessibility Module Challenge, an innovation prize to stimulate solutions to this problem.

Challenge Information: ONC is challenging multidisciplinary teams to create and test a module or application that makes it easy for disabled consumers to access and interact with the health data stored in their EHRs. The application should:

  • Be easy for individuals with disabilities to consume and interact with their health data
  • Be simple to install and learn to use
  • Identify and link to relevant local or online communities and organizations
  • Be able to download data from one or more EHR systems – it does not need to be fully integrated across all systems
  • Leverage and extend NwHIN standards and services including, but not limited to, transport (Direct, web services), content (Transitions of Care, CCD/CCR), and standardized vocabularies
  • Deadline: July 23, 2012
  • Prizes:
  • First Place: $60,000 + demo opportunity
  • Second Place: $20,000
  • Third Place: $5,000
  • If you think you have a great idea that can improve access to health records for the disabled, apply now at!