ONC offers $150K to solve ophthalmology interoperability woes

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Figuring out how to improve interoperability among office-based ophthalmic imaging devices would solve a lot of headaches related to data management within the specialty, and, thanks to a contest from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), it could also make a developer or team of developers $100,000 richer.

ONC’s Ocular Imaging Challenge is a call to developers to create an application that improves interoperability among office-based ophthalmic measurement devices, imaging devices and EHRs. Specifically, ONC expects submitted applications to be able to:

  • Convert output from legacy ophthalmic imaging and measurement devices from proprietary formats to vendor-neutral standards;
  • Archive data from multiple devices;
  • Display images along with some basic functionality for adjusting viewing parameters such as brightness, contrast and more;
  • Integrate with existing EHRs through methods such as “single sign-on;” and
  • Leverage and extend Nationwide Health Information Network standards where applicable.

Submissions will be judged based on the breadth of input devices and formats, useability of the imaging interface, integration with workflow and the platform neutrality, according to ONC.

A total of $150,000 in prizes will be awarded, with the first place submission earning $100,000 plus an opportunity for conference exhibition. Second and third places will receive $35,000 and $15,000, respectively.

The submission period has started and will last until Nov. 9. The evaluation process will last from Nov. 16 – 20, and winners will be notified on Nov. 27. Winners will be publically announced on Jan. 4, 2013.

Click here for more information on eligibility and submission requirements.