Wolf Administration Hosts Coding Event to Use Data and Technology to Fight the Opioid Epidemic

September 21, 2018

Harrisburg, PA – Nearly 450 technology professionals, addiction and recovery experts, college students, state officials and others will participate in a statewide coding event to find solutions to the opioid epidemic. “Code4PA” will begin this weekend at locations in Harrisburg, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

“Our goal with this event is to focus on data, technology and collaboration to combat the opioid crisis in Pennsylvania,” said Governor Wolf. “We have gathered hundreds of participants across the state to look at how we can leverage these resources to further strengthen our response and save lives.”

Participants will have access to opioid data from the state open data portal and other sources, as well as mobile, GIS and other technologies. They will use these resources to develop app prototypes, data visualizations and other tools focused on prevention, rescue and recovery. Projects can be based on suggestions by agencies involved in fighting the opioid epidemic or original ideas. The teams also will have access to mentors, workshops and other tools provided through the event.

Participants will present their projects on October 20 and winners will receive special recognition from the commonwealth.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services held an Opioid Symposium and Code-a-Thon last December that generated several promising app ideas, including a program to assist five states with prescription drug takeback programs and a model for real-time tracking of overdoses. A code-a-thon event in Virginia resulted in new ideas, including an app for youth, parents and a financial dashboard to help direct federal grants to areas where they are needed most.

The Pennsylvania Office of Administration, Harrisburg University of Science and Technology, Code for Philly, Technology Council for Central PA, Western Pennsylvania Regional Data Center, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, Heinz College/Carnegie Mellon University and industry sponsors will provide the facilities, hardware, software and other support for the event.

Last year’s Code4PA attracted over 200 participants in two cities to use data from the PA open data portal and other sources.

More information: www.code4pa.tech

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