• Ideas


Proposals were submitted to HHS Ignite from March 3 through March 28, 2014. In the end, 74 proposals representing approximately 250 individuals from the following Operational Divisions of the Department were received. The following is how these 74 broke down by the OpDiv listed as the Project Lead:

  • AHRQ (1)
  • CDC (13)
  • CMS (9)
  • FDA(4)
  • HRSA (2)
  • IHS (11)
  • NIH (13)
  • OS (16)
  • SAMHSA (5)

These proposals were reviewed by 21 reviewers and scored according to the communicated criteria:

  1. Proposed project’s importance to and potential impact on OpDiv and HHS mission [15 points]
  2. The likelihood that the methods and metrics proposed will produce and demonstrate reliable results (How would you measure impact / success?) [15 points]
  3. Transferability and/or scalability of the innovation [20 points]
  4. The novelty and disruptive nature of the innovation concept being tested [25 points]
  5. The feasibility of the project proposed in terms of timeline, capital resources, personnel and program support. [25 points]

The teams that submitted top tier proposals are given the opportunity to briefly discuss their project with members of the HHS Innovation Council. The goals of the brief conversations were for the Council members to get to know the teams (particularly the Project Lead) a bit and for them to better understand the project proposed. Those discussions occurred between April 22nd and April 24th.

In early May, selected teams were notified.


The Finalists

Of the 74 submitted proposals, the above methodology resulted in the 23 below listed finalists (organized simply by Lead OpDiv):

  • QDR-Process Improvement Project (QPIP) (submitted by staff from AHRQ/CQuIPS) *
  • Changeathon: Attracting Pre-Professionals to CDC (submitted by staff from CDC/OSTLS)
  • Scaling Up NHANES Genetic Program (submitted by staff from CDC/NCHS) *
  • Going Green! Getting Lab Tests out of the Cold Chain (submitted by staff from CDC/DVD)
  • Design of a Practice Feedback Report Challenge (submitted by staff from CMS/CMMI)
  • Medicare PPS Pricer Modernization (submitted by staff from CMS/CM)
  • Enhancing CMS Outreach with Coordination Solutions (submitted by staff from CMS/OC + Regions) *
  • Real Time Adverse Event Reporting (submitted by staff from FDA/CDER)
  • Streamline Leveraging to Advance FDA Science (submitted by staff from FDA/CBER)
  • Modernizing presentation clearance processes (submitted by staff from HRSA/BHP)
  • Loan Data Sharing with the Department of Education (submitted by staff from HRSA/BCRS) *
  • Initiating Telemental Health Services at GIMC (submitted by staff from IHS/Navajo Area)
  • Hospital Check-in Kiosk (submitted by staff from IHS/Phoenix Area) *
  • Automatic x-ray screening for rural areas (submitted by staff from NIH/NLM) *
  • NIH Clinical Center Virtual Internship Program (submitted by staff from NIH/Clinical Center) *
  • Mobile Antibiotic Resistance Diagnostic Platform (submitted by staff from NIH/NIAID)
  • Modernizing FDA’s Ingredient Data Systems (submitted by staff from NIH/NCATS + FDA/OC) *
  • Collaborative Analytics through Data Federation (submitted by staff from NIH/NIAD + FDA/CDER + CDC/OID) *
  • Developing & Refining a Mobile Outreach Strategy (submitted by staff from OS/OCR)
  • TEXT4WELLNESS (submitted by staff from OS/OASH)
  • Modernizing and Automating Medicare Appeals (submitted by staff from OS/OMHA)
  • My Treatment, My Voice: A Tool for MAT patients (submitted by staff from SAMHSA/CSAT)
  • Resourcing Community Ideas Regionally (submitted by staff from SAMHSA/OPPI) *

* indicates the team was ultimately selected into Ignite

Selection Methodology

The following methodology were used to calculate which teams advanced:

The 74 proposals were distributed across 7 panels of 3 reviewers. Therefore, each proposal received 3 reviews, the sum of which determined the total score. The two highest scoring proposals from each panel were determined as finalists. In addition, for each OpDiv, the highest scoring proposal was determined a finalist.

To account for variations in review panelists (that is, some scored more harshly or more nicely than others), we calculated z-scores for the proposals in each panel. For each OpDiv, the two proposals with the highest z-scores were determined as finalists.

In the spirit of transparency and public accountability, we are making all reviewer scores available here for public consumption. Please note: For this public document, reviewer and proposal details have been removed; you’ll be able to identify each by the proposal’s confirmation ID number. For individuals that submitted a proposal, the ID number was included in the confirmation email sent from idealab@hhs.gov to the Project Lead after the proposal was submitted online.

The full titles and text of the proposals will be made available within the HHS network. Please stay tuned for information on how to access those.


Names of the Reviewers

Presented in alphabetical order. 

Kelly Acton
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (Region IX), HHS

Richard Aragon
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Financial Resources, HHS

Dan Baden
Office of State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support, CDC

L’Tonya Davis
Office of Regulatory Affairs, FDA

Adam Dole
Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, HHS

David Hale
National Library of Medicine, NIH

Katerina Horska
Immediate Office of the Secretary, HHS

Ali S. Khan
Office of Public Health Preparedness & Response, CDC

John Kools
Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, CDC

Mike Levin
Office of the Chief Information Officer, HHS

Dan Luxenberg
Center for Information Technology, NIH

Stephanie Magill
Seattle Regional Office (Region X), CMS

Allison Oelschlaeger
Office of Enterprise Management, CMS

Sandeep Patel
Office of Business Management and Transformation, HHS

Oliver Potts
Immediate Office of the Secretary, HHS

Bonnie Preston
Office of Intergovernmental Affairs (Region IX), HHS

Emma Sandoe
Office of Communications, CMS

Sandra Scarborough
Office of the Director, NIH

John Shutze
Nashville Area Office, IHS

Heather Swope
Office of the Administrator, ACF

Amy Wiatr-Rodriguez
Office of Regional Operations, ACL

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