Code-a-Thon Offers Prizes, Chance to Improve Residents’ Health

Wanted: tech-savvy teams and individuals with brilliant ideas for using regional health data to engage the public through mobile and/or web-based technology.

Reward: $20,000 in cash prizes to be split among the designers of the top six software tools created.

The Challenge: develop your winning design or tool over two days – this Saturday, Feb. 22 and Sunday, Feb. 23.

Sound appealing? Then register for this weekend’s Code-a-Thon, a sprint over two days to design the most engaging tool such as a program or application to make health data accessible and meaningful to policy makers and residents. The goal is to support efforts to plan healthier communities and equip residents to lead healthier lives.

The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) is partnering with the California HealthCare Foundation and Health 2.0 to host the Code-a-Thon this weekend.

“There is a lot of data about health-related issues we make available to the public now,” said HHSA Director Nick Macchione. “But our challenge to participants is to take that available data and develop a tool or application that inspires action, from policy development to personal lifestyle choices.”

Educating residents to make healthy choices is one of the primary goals of Live Well San Diego, the County’s ongoing initiative to improve the health and safety of residents.

Although it’s called Code-a-Thon, participants do not need to actually know how to write code and develop an application. Participants with backgrounds in business, strategic planning, design, data management, health care and other related fields are invited to participate and submit designs.

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The County’s partnering sponsors for the event have committed $20,000 in total cash prizes that will be split among designers of the top six software tools created. The first-place winner will receive $9,000, second place will receive $5,000, third place will receive $3,000 and three runners-up will receive $1,000 each.

The event will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. The location is the Campus Center Chambers and Commons Café at the County Operations Center, 5520 Overland Drive, San Diego 92123.

For more information and to register, visit the Health 2.0 Developer Challenge.

Craig Sturak is a group communications officer with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact