Guest Post: Open App Challenge Developers on a Mission

As HIMSS13 approaches, today we kick off our pre-show guest blog series from health IT industry experts. Below is a guest contribution from Allscripts Director of Strategic Marketing, Michael Loesel, on phase one of the company’s Open App Challenge. This post is also available on the Allscripts blog. Watch for more pre-HIMSS posts to come in the next two weeks.

As I shared in my post, What’s Motivating Healthcare Innovators?, I’m encouraged by my conversations with Allscripts Open App Challenge developers. Solving healthcare problems is not about financial gain for them; it’s a mission to help others.

It’s about transforming healthcare. To make this happen, all of healthcare IT has to work together – and so do our solutions. Interoperability is key to unlocking the potential that technology has to offer. The Open App Challenge holds promise beyond any one vendor or company. By fostering innovation and collaboration, we have a much better chance to solve problems we once thought were unsolvable.

Phase One of the challenge is underway

We’ll likely have far more high-quality applications than we can recognize. I wish I were one of the judges that will review fascinating ideas from inspiring innovators.

Consider Dr. Phillip Lisagor, a retired cardio-thoracic surgeon. His mission is to help physicians and patients have the tough conversations needed to plan for end of life. Dr. Lisagor envisions “Rest Of Your Life” or “ROYL” champions in healthcare.

Then there is Dr. Tashfeen Ekram. After having difficulty rescheduling a dentist appointment for himself, he recognized a need for better scheduling options for patients in his own practice. He’s working towards a solution that will notify patients who are willing to be seen sooner of recent cancellations.

Declan Frye has a mission, too. He is creating tools for social workers and hospital discharge planners to quickly identify safety net facilities – such as nursing homes, mental health or substance abuse facilities. Access to this information can improve care coordination for patients as they move from one provider to another.

These are just a few examples from the surge of innovations happening today in healthcare. We’ll share more news from the Open App Challenge as it progresses.

You can see highlights of my video chats with CEOs and Founders of, SampleRx, Purple Binder, ROYL, Chiron Data Systems, mHealthCoach and more.

What do their stories tell you about today’s healthcare innovators?