SOURCE: Health 2.0

Health 2.0

April 10, 2012 08:35 ET

Health 2.0 Announces Winners of the Medicare Claims Data Challenge

Winners of the Competition Create Interactive Online Tools to Help Clinicians, Researchers, Industry Stakeholders Easily Access and Research a Wealth of Medicare Data

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - Apr 10, 2012) - Health 2.0 announced today that teams from Zenithech LLC, Avanade Inc. and Big Yellow Star won the Medicare Claims Data Developer Challenge sponsored by IMPAQ International LLC and the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago. IMPAQ, a social research and consulting services company, and NORC, a not-for-profit, academic research organization, created the competition to spur development of interactive Internet-based tools to make Medicare claims data more accessible and usable for clinicians, health researchers, consumers, policy-makers, entrepreneurs and others.

Teams comprised of software developers, entrepreneurs, and technologists participated in the national event, which required contestants to create online tools allowing users to access at least one of the eight public use files (PUFs) covering eight types of 2008 Medicare claims data released last year: inpatient, durable medical equipment, hospice, carrier line, home health, Medicare Part D, outpatient and skilled nursing facility. Applications were judged on the potential to help address Medicare claims data challenges, usability, and the potential for integration with existing claims systems or other health technology platforms.

"The ingenuity, innovation and creativity the participants demonstrated were exceptional," said Indu Subaiya, Co-Chair and CEO of Health 2.0, which collaborated with IMPAQ and NORC. "The tools they created will facilitate and foster exciting research that will drive new ideas and approaches to improve quality of care, lower costs and shape health policy. It was a tough competition, and we congratulate the winners."

The first place winner was Zenithech, a Fairfax, Va.-based developer of web and mobile applications. The company won $7,500 and two passes to the Health 2.0 Spring Fling Matchpoint Boston conference for developing MEDZ, a dashboard that displays and lets users conduct in-depth analysis of all eight PUFs for comparative research and in-depth analysis.

Avanade, a business technology solutions and managed services provider, captured second place with a business intelligence reporting tool called DataGnosis that enables researchers to perform canned and ad-hoc reporting on all eight PUFs. Users also can tie those claims with U.S. Census data, positioning them to identify trends and patterns across each state. Avanade was awarded $2,000.

Big Yellow Star, a Philadelphia company focused on health informatics, public health and health literacy projects, was awarded third place. It received $500 for a dashboard that makes hospice and outpatient PUFs accessible to users.

About Health 2.0
The conference. The media network. The innovation community. The Health 2.0 Conference is the leading showcase of cutting-edge innovation transforming the health care system. Since its beginning in 2007, Health 2.0 has served as a community resource for search and online tools to help consumers manage their health and connect to providers. Now that the industry has caught up, Health 2.0 covers the entire cloud, web, mobile and unplatforms technology revolution that is shaking up every sector of health care. For more, visit htttp://

About IMPAQ International
IMPAQ specializes in providing research and consulting services to domestic and international clients in the areas of impact evaluation studies, applied research, policy analysis, quantitative and qualitative data analysis, and technical assistance. IMPAQ supports multiple federal departments and agencies including Health and Human Services, Labor, Education, and Agriculture as well as the U.S. Agency for International Development, the World Bank, and the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Learn more at

About NORC at the University of Chicago
NORC at the University of Chicago is an independent research organization headquartered in downtown Chicago with additional offices on the University of Chicago's campus, the DC Metro area, Atlanta, and Boston. NORC also supports a nationwide field staff as well as international research operations. With clients throughout the world, NORC collaborates with government agencies, foundations, educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and businesses to provide data and analysis that supports informed decision making in key areas including health, education, economics, crime, justice, energy, security, and the environment. NORC's 70 years of leadership and experience in data collection, analysis, and dissemination -- coupled with deep subject matter expertise -- provides the foundation for effective solutions.

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