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Partnerships '98 Technology Showcase Guidelines

Back to Partnerships Homepage Partnerships '98 home page. "When you have a site that's out there competing for attention, you have a lot of noise to rise above."
—Michael S. Brown, President and Principal Associate, MSB Associates, Partnerships '97

The 1998 Technology Showcase will be held in conjunction with the Partnerships '98 conferences in Washington, DC and Philadelphia. At both locations, developers and vendors can demonstrate their applications and talk with conference attendees. The Showcase also will include workstations with links to selected online self-help groups along with demonstrations by leaders in the self-care community.

The optional Consumer Health Informatics Games are intended to be both entertaining and edifying. All Showcase participants can enter their web site(s) or application(s) in the games under specific categories related to consumers and patients described below. A select group of experts will review the entries, provide individualized feedback, and award nominal prizes for outstanding applications. There will also be a series of popular favorite awards. Participants may choose to be judged by the expert group or the meeting participants or both. Developers will receive valuable suggestions and wide exposure for their systems. The awards do not represent endorsement by any sponsoring organization. Since this is the first time this event has been offered, suggestions for improvement are welcome. We hope to learn as much about the process of judging applications as about the applications themselves.

Ample time will be set aside during the programs at both locations for people to visit the Showcase and Games. There will be a prize drawing for conference attendees who visit the Showcase. Showcase and Games participants will be featured on the Partnerships '98 web site.

Games Sponsors

The Games are made possible by the Annenberg School for Communication and the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.

The motto of the Games: Play Hard, Play Fair, Everybody Wins!

When and Where

Tuesday, April 28, at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, in conjunction with the Partnerships '98 conference focusing on consumer health informatics policy issues. The times for the Showcase and Games are 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., including the closing reception and awards ceremony.

May 27-28, in Philadelphia, as part of the Partnerships '98 joint meeting with the American Medical Informatics Association's Spring Congress, focusing on "Bringing Knowledge to the Point of Use." The Showcase and Games will open on Wednesday, May 27, at 5:00 p.m., with a reception, and will close on Thursday, May 28 at 7:00 p.m., with an awards ceremony and reception. The full meeting continues through Saturday, May 30, at the Wyndham Franklin Plaza Hotel, 17th and Race Streets, Philadelphia, PA.

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Anyone can enter the Showcase and Games: individuals; companies; educational, civic, and nonprofit entities; and public agencies. All noncommercial applicants may register at a reduced rate.

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Games Categories

Preliminary general categories for the Consumer Health Informatics Games are listed below, with relevant examples. Since this is an emerging field, we are asking our Games contestants to help us define the terrain by suggesting other categories. The final categories for the Games will be determined after the official deadline for entries, and participants will be notified of the final format.

No developer/company/organization can enter more than three web sites or other applications. Because some applications may have several functions, each application may be entered in up to two categories. To allow as many as possible to participate, the organizers may further limit the total number of applications from each developer.

1.  Health Information—General

Examples: interface to MEDLINE; medical reference on CD-ROM; consumer web site by an HMO, hospital, or group practice; consumer web site by a public health organization; directory of health and medical-related web sites; online health directory for a local community; or health provider directory.

2. Health Information—Specific/Tailored

Examples: online source for specific health information and/or advice (e.g., alternative medicine, cancer, depression, HIV/AIDS); self-help-oriented online FAQ list for a specific condition; online gateway site for mental health information; service to fill online or telephone requests for an indepth printed information packet for any specific health question or concern; or online source for finding specific health information provided by health web sites.

3. Decision Support

Examples: program to help a patient or caregiver decide between proposed medical procedures or alternative approaches to care, including "watchful waiting"; program to support shared decision-making for diagnosis and management of disease; or system to help a consumer choose a health plan and/or provider (including information about geography, specialties, accreditation, and quality measures).

4. Peer and Emotional Support

Examples: online support forum on a commercial service; self-help/support USENET newsgroup; self-help/support mailing list; online platform for starting new online support networks; online resource to help a user locate a support group (electronic and/or face-to-face) for a specific concern; or online support group for lay caregivers of patients with a chronic disease.

5. Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

Examples: health risk assessment that helps consumers identify and practice healthy behaviors; stress management program; tobacco cessation program; nutrition analysis program; weight management support program; exercise management program; or HIV/STD prevention program.

6. Self-Care, Condition Management, and Diagnostic Support

Examples: self-care database to help people make good decisions about symptom management and triage, home treatment, and when to see a health professional; or home health workstation for people with a specific health concern (integrates multiple functionality for one condition such as information, support group, online professional advice, and programs tailored for the condition).

7.  Provider-Patient Communication

Examples: online resource that provides health professional answers to medical questions; guidelines and/or practice standards for the effective use of provider-patient e-mail; demonstration project showing the effective use of provider-patient e-mail; telemedicine or telehealth service/program reaching into patients' homes; system linking patients to a health plan or other provider organization (with/without health information/patient education or provider communication components); or online consultation service to nurse or physician (free/unattached, free/attached to provider, or fee-based).

8. Patient Interfaces to Medical Records and Medical Institutions

Examples: system providing patient access to medical records; system providing patient-accessible or "patient-owned" medical records; system providing patient ownership of medical records; client/server system or password-protected web site linking patients with an HMO; system for taking an automated medical history directly from patients; or online integration of direct services to the home (e.g., appointments, lab results, provider communication, health information, and access to medical records).

9.  Systems for Specific Population Groups

Examples: online resource for persons with physical disabilities or low literacy, for seniors or children, or for a racial, ethnic, or linguistic group; or interface design taking into account the needs of people with disabilities (compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act).

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Special Award for Evaluation

There will be prizes for an organization, developer, web site, or application with outstanding evaluation methods and quality assurance processes (e.g., evaluation design and implementation by a system developer or independent reviewer/evaluator; beta-test design for feedback from end-users and prerelease improvement). All Games participants may enter this competition, regardless of the number of web sites or other applications they have entered in the Games. Additional details about this award will be provided to those who register for the Games.

All entries will also be eligible for the general recognition awards. Examples: collaborative web site or application between private and public sector; government-sponsored application; employer-sponsored application; implementation of innovative, cutting-edge technology; and implementation of old technology (28.8K or low bandwidth application).

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Prizes will be awarded in each final category by a judging committee selected by the Partnerships steering committee. There also will be prizes based on the popular vote of meeting participants at each location.

There will be at least two judges for each category. They should agree on a final decision. Judges can create new events and/or special awards on the spot. No fabulous program (or even interesting web site or application with certain strengths) should go unrewarded. In each category, judges will be encouraged to give multiple prizes as indicated, but the number of awards will be at the discretion of the judging committee. Judges and meeting participants will be provided with general guidelines for elements to consider, such as interface design, content, user friendliness, depth of information available, ease of use, innovation, and overall merit. Members of the Science Panel on Interactive Communication and Health and other experts will assist in developing guidelines and criteria for judging the web sites or applications. Judging committee members cannot judge a category in which an application with which they are or have been involved has been entered.

The judges may conduct their evaluations before the meetings officially open or early in the Showcase/Games so that they will not take time away from meeting participants.

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Awarding of Prizes

Prizes will be announced during an evening reception at each location. All award decisions are final. Prizes may include ribbons, certificates, and donated items of value.

The spirit of a friendly, unofficial competition is emphasized. Contestants/winners may not use their entrance/prize to imply any endorsement or formal award by any sponsoring organization. However, winners may use the following statement in their promotions: "Recognized as an outstanding application at the Consumer Health Informatics Games at Partnerships '98."

There also will be a prize drawing for meeting attendees. They will have an exhibitor card that they get stamped at each booth. Fully stamped cards will be eligible for this prize drawing.

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Virtual Showcase

Developers and web site hosts who cannot attend either conference may enter a "Virtual Showcase" by registering their URL. These sites will be featured on the Partnerships '98 web page for a period of 2 months and will be bookmarked on a dedicated workstation in each Showcase.

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Entry Fee and Deadline

Developers may enter their web site(s) or application(s) in one or both locations. There are special rates for those registering for both locations. The Showcase fee includes one full conference registration, entitling one person to all conference meals, materials, and events, and two Showcase-entrance-only registrations for booth staff. It also includes draped tables, Internet connectivity, electricity, and an 8' x 10' space. Only table top exhibits are permitted. Equipment rental will be extra. All Games entrants must pay the regular Showcase fee and also an entry fee for the Games based on the number of applications that they have entered. Technical support will be available. Additional details will be mailed to registrants.

More Information

If you have general exhibitor questions about the Showcase or Games, please contact Infinity Conference Group:

If you have questions about the organization and judging of the Games, contact Tom Eng, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, at

National Health Information Center
P.O. Box 1133
Washington, DC 20013-1133

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Last updated on
June 26, 2003