Five teams of coding gurus and health care experts banded together to make Kansas City healthier earlier this month at the Code Across KC event. The marathon day of planning yielded projects that could gather pertinent health data for the homeless population, as well as an app to makcodeacrosse access to condoms easier.

And those were just the ideas that made it to the table. Thanks to community input, about a dozen other ideas for tackling KC’s community health issues were offered up online.

Code Across 2016 kicks off a year of health collaboration between two of KC Digital Drive’s key programs: our Health Innovation Team and the Code for KC Brigade, which pulls together volunteer coders every Monday night at the Sprint Accelerator.

“(Code Across) is a weekend of volunteers coming together for civic good all around the world,” Linda Van Horn, CEO and founder of iShare Medical, tweeted. The intent of the daylong sprint was to prep projects with real stakeholders for the National Day of Civic Hacking on June 4, 2016. Like last year, Code for KC will incubate projects begun during that hackathon, with a goal of providing a working prototype by November.

Check out a brief breakdown of the five projects the teams tackled during the event at Polsinelli – the event sponsor – earlier this month, and join Code for KC from 6-8 p.m. Monday nights to participate in even more projects.

Project Faith Influencing Transformation (FIT)

  • An app that promotes wellness among faith-based African Americans, based on the similar SparkPeople program, but more streamlined. Users can track their intake of healthy foods, and output of calories via their activity. The ultimate goal is to connect this population with access to group education, an informational website and social media and access to individualized plans or coaches.
  • Lead: Alex Booker; Members: Dr. Kimberly Gandy, Carole Bowe-Thompson and Dr. Jannette Berkley-Patton


  • The Kansas City, MO Health Department’s HIV Services’ effort to extend its community presence and promote STI/HIV testing, care and condom distribution – all via an app. The I GOT MINE campaign app is a way to collect data, and offers a texting service for users to find free condoms.
  • Lead: Eric Dean; Members: Rodrigo Congalves, Eric Roche and Rachel Edelman

Youth Employment Project

  • A mobile app that offers youth a place to search for local job trainings and openings, as well as share job requirements (job must be on a certain bus line, or availability based on school). The idea is similar to a project designed by Code for America’s Boston brigade.
  • Leads: Marty Galutia and Sarah Martin-Anderson; Members: Leslie Scott and Jessica Cole

Baby book Health NANA

  • An ongoing project by KC Healthy Kids to create an app that targets health information for Head Start participants.
  • Lead: Sara Shipley

Community Health records/resources project

  • An app to collect health data from Kansas City’s homeless community to provide to third party services as appropriate.
  • Lead: Jae Edgar Bennett; Members: John Burch, Ron House and Dave LaCrone

Further Reading

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