by Patricia Salber

Yesterday, June 3, was the kick off for an amazing Challenge – the Blue Button Patient CoDesign Challenge.  Developers everywhere are being invited by the Office of the National Coordinator, to develop apps and other tools to use patient data, acquired via the Blue Button.  So, you might be thinking why is that so amazing?  It is because the entire Challenge has been designed to actively involve the end-users of the tool – patients.  Imagine that!

Here are the details:

From now until June 14 (note this is an extension from the original deadling of June 11, patients (that is just about all of us) are invited to go to to post their ideas about how they want to see their data used to create tools that they can use themselves or with their doctors.  Some of the ideas already posted include:

  • Please help my wife manage our children’s immunizations
  • A tool that simplifies the management of chronic multiple conditions,
  • Make my prescription management stink less (my favorite)

Three of the ideas will be chosen as the ones developers should design tools for.  But, they won’t build them alone – patients are being invited to participate in a CoDesign process whereby they can iterate with the developers and help shape the tools to be the ones they really want to and, hopefully, will use.  If you would like to be a patient co-designer, please send an email to – patient co-designers will be reimbursed for their time.  At the completion of the CoDesign phase, patients will be invited to vote for the winners.  Altogether, this is a brilliant idea whose time has come.  Patient centered health care is the wave of the future …at last.

Kudos to ONC and the leaders of this wonderful Challenge:  Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology; Rebecca Mitchell Coelius, Medical Officer for Innovation, ONC Office of Science and Technology; and Adam Wong, Management and Program Analyst. ONC.

Here is a fun interview with the National Coordinator from Health Datapalooza in Washington DC:

Patricia Salber MD, MBA (@docweighsin)
Patricia Salber, MD, MBA is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Doctor Weighs In. She is also the CEO of Health Tech Hatch, the sister site of TDWI that helps innovators tell their stories to the world. She is also a physician executive who has worked in all aspects of healthcare including practicing emergency physician, health plan executive, consultant to employers, CMS, and other organizations. She is a Board Certified Internist and Emergency Physician who loves to write about just about anything that has to do with healthcare.


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