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Private Money Looks For Cure To Health Care

Posted by Jane Akre
Thursday, October 16, 2008 12:03 PM EST
Category: Major Medical, Protecting Your Family, In The Workplace
Tags: Managed Care, Health CAre, Public Policy, Insurance Companies

10 million in private money to solve the health care dilemma.



IMAGE SOURCE: xprize foundation web site 


The task is not a small one - find a way to “revolutionize health care and make it available to everybody”.

The prize - $10 million.

That is the challenge and offer being made by the philanthropic organization, X PRIZE Foundation, along with the WellPoint Foundation, the nation’s largest health insurance company. 

In the first of its kind venture, WellPoint is partnering with XPRIZE to solicit the best ideas from individuals, employees, healthcare providers, and all consumers.

“The stakes are too high and the opportunity too great to not do everything we can with any and all willing partners that may identify the next great solution in health care,” says Angela Braly, president and CEO of WellPoint. 

The challenge is open to anyone and the results will be shared and not considered proprietary.

XPRIZE is looking for innovation, rather than rewarding plans already in existence or to fund research, a statement says.

“Revolution through competition,” is the organization theme.

Accolades are coming in for this approach to health care. Former U.S. Senator Bill Bradley supports the solution as does former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich who says that the partnership, “is such a profound application of the prize concept to social public policy that I think it’s a terrific breakthrough.”

An X PRIZE video explains the challenge, although the final rules and guidelines will be issued early next year.

The X PRIZE Foundation is a non-profit prize institute using private money to design and manage public competitions for the benefit of humanity.

It has offered competitive prizes to encourage teams to build private spaceships to open the space frontier; to encourage the development of human genome sequencing; to build fuel efficient vehicles that get 100 miles per gallon.   

XPRIZE has also launched other initiatives such as a $30 million competition for the first privately funded team to send a robot to the moon.

Teaming with Google, film director James Cameron explains in a YouTube video that this collaboration will take over where Apollo 17 left off 35 years ago. Using private ingenuity and cost effectiveness, the project is bypassing government and looking for private solutions to bringing humans back to the moon.    

WellPoint will test the finalists’ health care proposals in real-world situations in the company’s state plans before awarding the $10 million.   #

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