Apps focused on controlling weight take top prizes

By Erin McCann
10:11 AM

The winners of the Washington D.C. Health Data & Innovation Week Code-a-Thon were announced Tuesday. School Fit was awarded first place for developing an application that utilizes physical fitness data to monitor the health of children in public schools.

The app will allow communities to recognize and collaboratively address obesity problems in California public schools. School Fit earned $4,000 and two passes to the Health Data Initiative Forum III and the 2012 Health 2.0 Annual Fall Conference. 

[See also: Smart contact lenses, vital sign sensors to kick mobile health up a notch.]

The Health 2.0 Code-a-Thon, sponsored by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and Kaiser Permanente, attracted thousands of healthcare providers, policymakers and innovators from across the U.S.  

Teams comprising students, software developers and researchers participated in the two-day event, which required contestants to use publicly available data to create online tools and applications to enhance quality of care and prevent obesity.

"The judges had an especially difficult time choosing a winner and extended passes to the Health 2.0 fall conference to the second place team to encourage further development of its app," said Indu Subaiya, co-chair and CEO of Health 2.0.

[Q&A: ONC's Wil Yu on how app contests offer more than money.]

Healthy Plate placed second by creating a mobile app that educates and improves nutritional literacy by displaying the nutritional information about the user's food they intend to purchase by portion, recipe or grocery list. It won $3,000 and two passes to Health 2.0's annual conference.

The LessBadd and SMS2Live teams tied for third place. Both teams received $1,000.

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