The “Stay Covered Challenge” calls for the development of a marketing/outreach campaign designed for use by providers and community-based organizations in targeting individuals in Medicaid due to disability. For example, competitors should consider developing marketing   materials communicating the importance of maintaining eligibility by responding to communications from the Medicaid agency, and by communicating to the agency about housing changes or other changes of circumstance that might impact program eligibility.  The materials submitted as a part of the challenge competition will be evaluated as to how useful they would be in (1) targeting individuals experiencing or at risk of churn; and (2) fostering the use of the materials by the full range of providers and community-based organizations serving Medicaid populations with behavioral health needs. 

The “Churn Marketing Research Methodology Development Challenge” asks competitors to develop a research methodology on how to identify actionable marketing data on this group.  The challenge will not involve the development of communications materials targeting these individuals. This challenge tasks researchers with developing a methodology for identifying the marketing communications profile of uninsured individuals who have been disenrolled from coverage affordability programs but remain eligible for enrollment. 

Hackathon Sponsors


$50,000 in prizes

First Place

"Stay Covered Challenge"

Second Place

"Stay Covered Challenge"

Third Place

"Stay Covered Challenge"

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:


  1. Shall have registered to participate in the competition under the rules promulgated by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA);
  2. Shall have complied with all the requirements under this section;
  3. In the case of a private entity, shall be incorporated in and maintain a primary place of business in the United States, and in the case of an individual, whether participating singly or in a group, must be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States; and
  4. May not be a federal entity or federal employee acting within the scope of their employment
  5. May not be an HHS employee working on their application or submission during assigned duty hours;
  6. May not be an employee of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration;
  7. Federal grantees may not use federal funds to develop COMPETES Act challenge applications unless consistent with the purpose of their grant award; and
  8. Federal contractors may not use federal funds from a contract to develop COMPETES Act challenge applications or to fund efforts in support of a COMPETES Act challenge submission.


The judging panel will make selections based upon the following criteria (100 points total):

"Stay Covered Challenge"

  1. Consideration of Medicaid and Health Exchange Enrollment processes in each state, including current mechanisms states and health plans use to communicate with enrollees regarding recertification (25 points).
  2. Development of (1) messages encouraging providers and community based organizations to reach out to persons experiencing or at risk of churn, and (2) messages for use by providers and CBOs in reaching out to persons experiencing or at risk of churn, on those eligible for Medicaid due to disability (25 points).
  3. Demonstration of creative and innovative uses of multiple platforms of media, including but not limited to social media, mobile/smart phones, television, radio, and other traditional forms of outreach (25 points).
  4. Demonstration of the potential to improve the health status of individuals with behavioral health needs which will be measured by the likelihood of increased coverage among this population as the result of these efforts. (25 points).

"Churn Marketing Research Methodology Development Challenge"

 Applications should be no longer than 10 pages and include the following (100 points total):

  1. Understanding the problem, including references from the available literature (20 points).
  2. Description of the data, methods of analysis, characteristics of the population (60 points).
  • Data sets to be used and the applicant’s access to the data - (10 points).
  • Methods of defining the population of interest – “churners” - (20 points)
  • Methods of defining the demographic, psychographic, and economic characteristics - (15 points)
  • Table shells (may be presented in an Appendix) - (15 points)

    3. Personnel qualifications, including data analysis and technical      resources available (resume may be presented in an Appendix) - (20 points)


How to enter

To register for this Challenge, entrants must visit the website and search for "Stay Covered Challenge" and/or "Churn Marketing Research Methodology Development Challenge". A registration link for the Challenge can be found on the landing page under the challenge description. For complete rules, please refer to the Federal Register Announcement of Requirements and Registration, located online at


Kevin Malone

Kevin Malone
Public Health Analyst

Nicole Hudson

Nicole Hudson

Phillip Ames

Phillip Ames

Judging Criteria

  • The judging panel for the "Stay Covered Challenge" will make selections based upon the following criteria (100 points total):
    Consideration of enrollment processes and communication efforts across states(25pts); Development of messages targeting providers and organizations (25pts); Innovative use of media (25pts); Potential to improve health status (25pts)

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