Wednesday, March 27, 2019

1965, Meet 2025: Medicare Launches AI Challenge for $1.6M

You've been waiting since November 2018 (here).  The Innovation Center, or CMMI, at CMS wants to support new ways through which AI can improve the quality of healthcare.

See the "AI Health Outcomes Challenge Homepage" here.  It's in partnership with the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and the American Academy of Family Physicians (CMS contributes $1M and the other two, together, $600,000).

Here's what CMS says:
CMS is calling on developers from all industries to create new predictive AI applications to help providers participating in CMS Innovation Center models to deliver better care and make quality measures more impactful. 
"The Artificial Intelligence Health Outcomes Challenge is a three stage competition that will begin with the Launch Stage, in which participants will submit an application at," officials explain. "Up to 20 participants will be selected to participate in Stage 1 of the Challenge. We anticipate that more information about Stage 1 and Stage 2 will be announced later this year." 
As much as $1.65 million in total awarded to participants during Stage 1 and Stage 2.
"If selected for Stage 1, participants will develop algorithms that predict health outcomes from Medicare fee-for-service data, and strategies and methodologies to explain the artificial intelligence-driven predictions to frontline clinicians and physicians while building trust in the data," according to CMS. "Participants in Stages 1 and 2 of the competition will use Medicare claims data sets provided by CMS to develop their algorithms and solutions."

  • See the full 11-page notice online here.  Entries are due June 18.
  • See coverage at Healthcare IT News here, Fierce Healthcare here, HealthLeaders here.  

In the past day, the Trump Administration has announced that it would not fight a lawsuit (running in Texas and higher courts) that would wipe out the whole Affordable Care Act, including the CMS Innovation Center which runs the AI Challenge.  CMMI was created by Section 3021 of the ACA.


In 2016, the Arnold Foundation awarded $7M to four groups working on drug price policy, including one to Peter Bach of Memorial Sloan Kettering - here.

For an article on more mundane uses of AI, such as matching Medicaid-eligible patients to their Medicare Advantage plans, here.

The UK also has been issuing upbeat reports about how AI and DHealth can improve the NHS - entry point here.

For a June 2019 conference on AI and healthcare in Boston, here.

For a March 2019 PWC report on digital health, pharma, and FDA, here.