University of Utah kicks off Games4Health Competition with total prize money of $50,000

The University of Utah is asking creative and innovative students from across the globe to address real-world challenges facing wellbeing, home health and clinical needs in the 2nd Annual Games4Health Grand Prix Competition. Prize money will total $50,000 for digital games that improve various aspects of health.

The healthcare industry finds itself in the midst of the most profound transformation in over a century. Digital technologies are expected to drive positive change around the world.

“This year we have doubled the amount of prize money for our challenge, making this the largest student health gaming challenge in the world,” said Chris Wasden, executive director of the Sorenson Center for Discovery & Innovation. “We have seen tremendous interest in health gaming from major corporations such as MetLife and entrepreneurial startups such as Arches Health Plan.”

Sponsors posed specific challenges:

  • Arches Health Plan offered $3,000 in prizes for game solutions to increase the purchase of health insurance by young adults.
  • MetLife wants competitors to tackle the problem of driver distraction through texting and the like, offering $5,000 in prizes.
  • The iThrive Initiative has offered $10,000 in prizes for digital games that strengthen adolescent emotional capacity. iThrive is led by Centerstone Research Institute and supported with a generous grant from the D.N. Batten Foundation.
  • The Sorenson Center for Discovery & Innovation is offering $30,000 for entries in any other sectors of health. Details on the specific challenges and entry rules are outlined on the website

Students have until Feb. 20 to register for the event. The competition is structured under three categories:

  1. Wellbeing – Use cases that improve physical or mental health but the patient is not under medical orders or supervision. This includes fitness, wellness, positive psychology, prevention, safety, sports, and outdoors.
  2. Home Therapy – Use cases under medical orders or supervision but not performed within a medical or clinical location or environment. This includes use cases like simple or complex disease management and transition care management.
  3. Clinical – Use cases performed within a clinical or medical location and under medical orders or supervision, or administrative functions that support or facilitate medical activities. This includes diagnostics, therapeutics, electronic health records and scheduling.

Students may submit any one of the following:

  • Wireframe – A set of images that displays the functional elements of an app, game or website used for planning a site’s structure and functionality. The wireframe must include dynamic navigation and graphic details to mimic the look, feel, function and navigation experience expected of a coded game.
  • Game – An alpha, beta or fully coded and completed game or application.
  • Module – A module that could be added to an existing game. The module can be either in the form of a wireframe or a game.

The competition deadlines and event schedule are as follows:

  • February 20, 2015 – Registration deadline to compete
  • March 20, 2015 – Submission deadline for judging
  • March 30, 2015 – Snowbird Summit event
  • March 31, 2015 afternoon – Arcade event open to the public
  • March 31, 2015 evening – Gala event, dinner and awards ceremony
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