Independence Blue Cross offers $150K for wellness IT ideas

Independence Blue Cross (IBX) is recruiting new and innovative ideas from the public for developing health IT programs that encourage healthy behavior and will pay $150,000 for the winning idea.

The Philadelphia-based insurer announced Wednesday the launch of its IBX Game Changers Challenge, which seeks software applications, devices, products, education programs or public awareness campaigns that promote fitness, preventive medicine, healthy eating and medication adherence while reducing childhood obesity, reported MedCity News.

IBX will offer $50,000 plus business mentoring services from innovation experts, including the Wharton Entrepreneurial Program, for up to three winners to help implement their ideas, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

"By harnessing the creative energies of our community and soliciting solutions that can improve our region's health and wellness, we are leading the way with our partners toward creating a healthier community," IBX President and CEO Daniel Hilferty said in a statement.

Because the Philadelphia community ranks particularly low in many health measures, Hilferty said the insurer needs "fresh, creative approaches and out-of-the-box thinking" to help improve the area's health status. He added that the challenge will help IBX and Philadelphia's research institutions, hospital systems and pharmaceutical companies become a "national hub for health innovation and creation of jobs and improvement in the way healthcare is delivered," Hilferty told the Inquirer.

To learn more:
- see the MedCity News article
- read the Philadelphia Inquirer article
- check out the IBX statement

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