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NICHD's Decoding Maternal Morbidity Data Challenge

Delivering New Data Solutions to Improve Maternal Health

National Institutes of Health, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)

Total Cash Prizes Offered: $400,000
Type of Challenge: Analytics, visualizations, algorithms
Partner Agencies | Non-federal: Freelancer.com, Adionatech.com
Submission Start: 06/29/2021 09:00 AM ET
Submission End: 10/15/2021 05:00 PM ET

Description

Challenge Summary

The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announces its Decoding Maternal Morbidity Data Challenge to help advance research on maternal health and promote healthy pregnancies. The Challenge goal is to devise new ways of analyzing the large dataset from its Nulliparous Pregnancy Outcomes Study: Monitoring Mothers-to-be (nuMoM2b) to identify factors that impact maternal morbidity and severe maternal morbidity so that clinicians can more quickly and accurately identify and treat pregnancy-related conditions and prevent severe illness or death for a pregnant person. The total purse for the Challenge is $400,000.

Subject of the Challenge

Each year in the United States, more than 50,000 women experience severe maternal morbidity (SMM), unexpected outcomes of labor and delivery that result in significant short- or long-term health consequences, and many more experience maternal morbidity (MM), unexpected outcomes of labor and delivery that affect women’s health but are less significant. In addition, the United States has the highest ratio of maternal mortality among developed nations; according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Pregnancy Mortality Surveillance System, as of 2019 there were 16.7 deaths per 100,000 live births, a number that has been increasing since the surveillance began in 1987. Large disparities exist based on race/ethnicity and other factors.

The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) mission is to lead research and training to understand human development, improve reproductive health, enhance the lives of children and adolescents, and optimize abilities for all. In support of this mission, NICHD conducted the Nulliparous Pregnancy Outcomes Study: Monitoring Mothers-to-be (nuMoM2b) to study nulliparous women, those for whom this pregnancy would lead to their first delivery. Potential adverse pregnancy outcomes among these women are less predictable because they have not given birth before and no prior data on how they respond to pregnancy is available. NuMoM2b began in 2010 and compiled data on more than 10,000 racially, ethnically, and geographically diverse participants. Data collection began in the 6th week of pregnancy and continued through delivery. Collected data include interviews, questionnaires, clinical measurements, patient charts, and biological specimens.

Through the Decoding Maternal Morbidity Data Challenge, NICHD seeks innovative approaches to identify new areas of research on SMM and MM from the nuMoM2b dataset. NICHD invites scientists and teams of scientists to use novel computational analysis, data mining, or unique learning approaches on the data to identify factors that impact SMM and MM so that clinicians can more quickly and accurately diagnose and treat pregnancy-related conditions and prevent severe illness and death among pregnant people.

Key Dates

  • Challenge Launch: June 29, 2021 09:00 AM ET
  • Submission Start: June 29, 2021 10:00 AM ET
  • Submission Deadline: October 15, 2021 5:00 PM ET
  • Judging Period: October 16, 2021, to December 1, 2021
  • Winners Announced: December 2, 2021

Prizes

Total Cash Prize Pool

$400,000

Prize Breakdown

Up to seven (7) winners will be selected, with each winning $50,000.

Up to five (5) additional prizes of $10,000 will be awarded to winning solutions that address MM in at-risk racial and ethnic groups.

Non-monetary Prizes

Winners may be given the opportunity to present their solution at a symposium. NICHD will not provide travel funds for the event.

Award Approving Official

The Award Approving Official will be Dr. Diana Bianchi, NICHD Director.

Payment of the Prize

Prizes awarded under this Challenge will be paid by electronic funds transfer and may be subject to Federal income taxes. All payments will be made to U.S. bank accounts only. HHS/NIH will comply with the Internal Revenue Service withholding and reporting requirements, where applicable.

NIH reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to (a) cancel, suspend, or modify the Challenge, or any part of it, for any reason, and/or (b) not award any prizes if no submissions are deemed worthy.

Rules

  • To be eligible to win a prize under this Challenge, a Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity):

    • Shall have registered to participate in the Challenge under the rules promulgated by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as published in this announcement;
    • Shall have complied with all the requirements set forth in this announcement;
    • 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, shall be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States. However, non-U.S. citizens and non-permanent residents can participate as a member of a team that otherwise satisfies the eligibility criteria. Non-U.S. citizens and non-permanent residents are not eligible to win a monetary prize (in whole or in part). Their participation as part of a winning team, if applicable, may be recognized when the results are announced
    • Shall not be a federal entity or federal employee acting within the scope of their employment;
    • Shall not be an employee of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS, or any other component of HHS) acting in their personal capacity;
    • Who is employed by a federal agency or entity other than HHS (or any component of HHS), should consult with an agency ethics official to determine whether the federal ethics rules will limit or prohibit the acceptance of a prize under this Challenge;
    • Shall not be a judge of the Challenge, or any other party involved with the design, production, execution, or distribution of the Challenge or the immediate family of such a party (i.e., spouse, parent, step-parent, child, or step-child).
    • Shall be 18 years of age or older at the time of submission.
  • Federal grantees may not use Federal funds from a grant award to develop their Challenge submissions or to fund efforts in support of their Challenge submissions unless use of such funds is consistent with the purpose of their grant award. If a grantee using federal funds wins the competition, the award must be treated as program income for purposes of the original grant in accordance with applicable Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (2 CFR § 200).
  • Federal contractors may not use federal funds from a contract to develop their Challenge submissions or to fund efforts in support of their Challenge submissions.
  • By participating in this Challenge, each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) agrees to assume any and all risks and waive claims against the federal government and its related entities, except in the case of willful misconduct, for any injury, death, damage, or loss of property, revenue, or profits, whether direct, indirect, or consequential, arising from participation in this Challenge, whether the injury, death, damage, or loss arises through negligence or otherwise.
  • Based on the subject matter of the Challenge, the type of work that it will possibly require, as well as an analysis of the likelihood of any claims for death, bodily injury, property damage, or loss potentially resulting from Challenge participation, no Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) participating in the Challenge is required to obtain liability insurance or demonstrate financial responsibility in order to participate in this Challenge.
  • By participating in this Challenge, each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) agrees to indemnify the federal government against third party claims for damages arising from or related to Challenge activities.
  • A Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) shall not be deemed ineligible because the Participant used federal facilities or consulted with federal employees during the Challenge if the facilities and employees are made available to all Participants participating in the Challenge on an equitable basis.
  • By participating in this Challenge, each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) warrants that they are sole author or owner of, or has the right to use, any copyrightable works that the submission comprises, that the works are wholly original with the Participant (or is an improved version of an existing work that the Participant has sufficient rights to use and improve), and that the submission does not infringe any copyright or any other rights of any third party of which the Participant is aware. Each participant must clearly delineate any Intellectual Property (IP) and/or confidential commercial information contained in an entry that the participant wishes to protect as proprietary data. All materials submitted to NIH as part of an entry become NIH agency records. Any confidential commercial or financial information contained in an entry must be clearly designated at the time of entry. If the entry includes any third-party works (such as third-party content or open source code), the participant must be able to provide, upon request, documentation of all appropriate licenses and releases for use of such third-party works. If the participant cannot provide documentation of all required licenses and releases, NIH reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to disqualify the entry. Each participant also warrants that the work is free of security threats and/or malware.
  • Each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) selected to win a prize under this Challenge, must grant to the NIH an irrevocable, paid-up, royalty-free nonexclusive worldwide license to reproduce, publish, post, link to, share, and display publicly the submission on the web or elsewhere, and a nonexclusive, nontransferable, irrevocable, paid-up license to practice, or have practiced for or on its behalf, the solution throughout the world. Each Participant will retain all other intellectual property rights in their submissions, as applicable. To participate in the Challenge, each Participant must warrant that there are no legal obstacles to providing the above-referenced nonexclusive licenses of the Participant’s rights to the federal government. To receive an award, Participants selected to win a prize under this Challenge will not be required to transfer their intellectual property rights to NIH, but winners must grant to the federal government the nonexclusive licenses recited herein.
  • Each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) agrees to follow all applicable federal, state, and local laws, regulations, and policies.
  • Each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) participating in this Challenge must comply with all terms and conditions of these rules, and participation in this Challenge constitutes each such Participant’s full and unconditional agreement to abide by these rules. Winning is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements herein.
  • As a condition for winning a cash prize in this Challenge, each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) that has been selected as a winner must complete and submit all requested winner verification and payment documents to NICHD within 14 business days of formal notification. Failure to return all required verification documents by the date specified in the notification may be a basis for disqualification of a cash prize winning submission.
  • Each Participant (whether an individual, group of individuals, or entity) must register on the NICHD Data and Specimens Hub (DASH) and agree to/abide by the DASH Data Use Agreement (DUA) to access the nuMoM2b dataset. The DUA requires that Participants have an affiliation with an existing institution/organization/company, and that the Participant and the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) for their affiliated institution/organization/company sign the agreement.

Judging Criteria

A panel of federal employees serving as judges will review the prize competition submissions based on the following criteria:

  • Proposal Quality: Is the proposal complete? Does it address the challenge? Is the information presented clearly? Maximum points: 5
  • Problem Comprehension and Approach: Does the team have a clear understanding of the problem? Is there a clear explanation of how their solution addresses the challenge? Does the solution clearly address an issue related to maternal morbidity? Maximum points: 10
  • Innovation: Is the solution unexpected or out of the box? Does it have the potential to move science beyond what was previously considered? Did they approach the data in a new or unique way? Maximum points: 20
  • Potential Impact: Does the solution have the potential to impact large numbers of pregnant women? Does the solution have the potential to have a profound impact on a subset of the population? Does the solution address what could be a big problem? Maximum points: 20
  • Holistic view of proposal: Judges’ impression of the submission. Sense of the overall viability, innovation, thoroughness, potential to complete a winning prototype. Maximum points: 10
  • Applicability: Can the solution be extended or applied to other areas? Other areas within maternal morbidity? Other areas beyond maternal morbidity? Maximum points: 10
  • Disadvantaged Racial and Ethnic Communities: How does the solution impact adversely impacted populations? Is the impact clearly described and demonstrated? Do they demonstrate an understanding of issues around maternal morbidities within in that population? Maximum points: 10
  • Robustness: Is the solution robust enough to stand up to issues such as noisy or incomplete data? How large a data set is required to function correctly? Was the solution adequately and suitably tested? Did the solution perform well under the tests? Did they adequately describe their results and their rationale? Possible metrics include: Classification Accuracy, Logarithmic Loss, Confusion Matrix, Area under Curve, F1 Score, Mean Absolute Error, Mean Squared Error. Maximum points: 10
  • Efficient/Ease of Use: How efficient is the implementation of the model? Is the data solution clear? Not overly complicated? Would it be straightforward for a researcher to move forward with the solution? Maximum points: 5

Total possible points: 100

Up to seven (7) prizes will be awarded to the data solutions that score the highest according to the judges’ rubric. Up to five (5) additional prizes will be awarded to winning solutions that address maternal morbidity in at-risk racial and ethnic groups.

How to Enter

Registration Process

All submissions must be made online through the submission website.

Submission URL: https://www.freelancer.com/contest/1953085

Submission Requirements

Submissions must be uploaded to the Challenge page before the deadline, October 15, 2021, at 5:00 pm ET. All submissions must be submitted using the forms provided on the Challenge webpage and all code must be uploaded to a designated location on GitHub. No late submissions will be accepted.

A team or individual may submit more than one solution to the challenge. However, each submission must be a substantially different solution. For example, the solutions might look at different comorbidities or create completely different data solutions. You will have the opportunity to explain the differences between your solutions. If the solutions are determined to be too similar, only the most recently submitted or updated solution will be considered.

Submissions must be in English, and machine readable (not handwritten).

Supplementary Information

Point of Contact

Have feedback or questions about this challenge? Send the challenge manager an email