Aneesh Chopra Talks About The Upcoming Hokie Health Code-a-Thon
We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Aneesh Chopra – former Chief Technology Officer of the United States and Virginia’s fourth Secretary of Technology – to discuss health care information technology in Virginia and the upcoming Hokie Health Code-a-Thon, taking place on April 13-14 in Blacksburg, Virginia.
Why a Code-a-Thon? According to Aneesh, “there has never been a better time to be an innovator in healthcare.” The assertion is based on three premises, which Aneesh believes will ultimately converge to change health care in every community across the country: 1) A health care economy is emerging – as evidenced by system digitization, increasing EHR adoption and the scaling opportunities created by the Recovery Act , 2) As information flows from these systems and related information sources in the government, technologies will integrate to bring about care delivery transformation and 3) As payment evolves, the care delivery system will focus on outcomes instead of volume and input to effect quality improvement.
Why Virginia? For Aneesh, Virginia’s health care economy is “on the move,” making it the ideal entity to lead the care delivery revolution. He sees five reasons for this: First, pre-dating investments in the Affordable Care Act, Virginia has emphasized the value and need for health IT. It has already launched EHRs and pushed policy designed to digitize the infrastructure. Second, these characteristics have granted Virginia a leading role in policy that is necessary to support the care delivery transformation. For example, it is the first state in the country to adopt a law calling for interoperability standards. Third, Virginia is home to two of the first pilot projects which provided early insight into the complexity and opportunity for Health Information Exchange (HIE). Just this week, the statewide HIE launched a free offering for Direct messaging in the commonwealth. Fourth, a number of start-ups have flourished as a byproduct of the burgeoning and ‘moving’ economy and are now providing solutions that improve outcomes and quality. Fifth and last, Virginia is recognized as the best state to raise a child with a lifetime of economic success and high quality of life, making it the perfect place to scale and bend health care structure and transition the care delivery model.
The two-day code-a-thon event – which Aneesh claims will “bring the best and brightest together” - will take place at TechPad in Blacksburg, VA. The first day will feature a number of expert speakers, including Aneesh Chopra (Innovation in Health IT), Greg Downing (Big Data in Health IT), Matthew Holt (Commercializing Health IT) and Eric Ries (Launching a Lean Startup). Following the tech-talks, teams will have the opportunity to pitch their ideas. On the second day, teams will wrap-up coding and present their solutions. The day will culminate in a live judging session and awards ceremony, and the top six teams will take home crash prizes.
Aneesh hopes that starting the Monday morning after the Code-a-Thon, Blacksburg will be act as the “start of a conversation in every corner of the commonwealth and Hokie Health will be the epicenter of revolutionary activity for months to come.” For more information and to register for the event, visit the Code-a-Thon homepage.