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Informational Only

This challenge is no longer accepting new submissions.

Mental Health and TBI Care Challenge

You can help shape the future of mental health and traumatic brain injury care!

Department of Defense

Type of Challenge: Ideas
Submission Start: 05/04/2015 12:00 AM ET
Submission End: 06/05/2015 12:00 AM ET

This challenge is externally hosted.

You can view the challenge details here:


Mental health is as important as physical health. However, many people with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury (TBI) don’t get the care they need – including our nation’s Service members. Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) exists to improve the lives of our nation's Service members, veterans, and their families by advancing excellence in psychological health and traumatic brain injury prevention and care – and we want to hear from you.

We challenge you to share your thoughts on improving mental health care. If you could pitch an idea to fill gaps in care and improve the well-being of people with PTSD or traumatic brain injury, what would it be?

Gaps in care may exist in areas such as prevention, diagnosis and identification, treatment, or research. Solutions can include ideas for new services, technologies, products, or specific research related to PTSD and TBI.

You Can Make a Difference Your input is valuable and we want to hear from everyone — whether you are a caregiver, a clinician, someone living with PTSD or TBI, or someone with a good idea to share. You don’t have to be an expert to participate.

What's DCoE? DCoE is a Defense Department organization that works to improve the lives of service members, veterans, and their families, by advancing excellence in psychological health and traumatic brain injury prevention and care. DCoE includes three centers: Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC)Deployment Health Clinical Center (DHCC), and National Center for Telehealth and Technology (T2).

Psychological Health
Psychological health encompasses many aspects of a person's mental well-being. Common psychological health concerns among service members include posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety and substance use disorder. In addition to advancing the treatment for these concerns, DCoE helps connect people with available relevant resources, develops products and works to clarify misconceptions.

Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury can be the result of a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the function of the brain. In the general population 1.7 million people sustain a TBI each year, resulting in 52,000 deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention1 and Rand Corp2. The most common TBIs are mild, also known as concussions. 1Langlois, J.A., Rutland-Brown, W., & Thomas, K.E. (2006). Traumatic brain injury in the United States: Emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and deaths. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nation Center for Injury Prevention and Control. 2Tanielian, T. & Jaycox. L.H., eds. (2008). Invisible Wounds of War. Psychological and cognitive injuries, their consequences, and services to assist recovery. Santa Monica, CA: RAND.


To be eligible to win a prize under this Challenge, an individual or entity:
  1. 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, shall be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States. However, non-U.S. citizens and non-permanent residents may participate but are not eligible to win a monetary prize (in whole or in part) but may be recognized when the results are announced.
  2. In the case of an individual must be at least 18 years old at the time of entry;
  3. May not be a Federal entity.;
  4. May 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).
  5. Federal grantees may not use Federal funds to develop their Challenge submissions unless use of such funds is consistent with the purpose of their grant award and specifically requested to do so due to the Challenge design.
  6. Federal contractors may not use Federal funds from a contract to develop their Challenge submissions or to fund efforts in support of their Challenge submission.
  7. Submissions must not infringe upon any copyright or any other rights of any third party. Each participant warrants that he or she is the sole author and owner of the work and that the work is wholly original.
  8. By participating in this Challenge, each individual 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 their participation in the Challenge, whether the injury, death, damage, or loss arises through negligence or otherwise.
  9. 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, or property damage, or loss potentially resulting from Challenge participation, no in the Challenge is required to obtain liability insurance or demonstrate financial responsibility in order to participate in this Challenge.
  10. By participating in this Challenge, each individual agrees to indemnify the Federal Government against third party claims for damages arising from or related to Challenge activities.
  11. An individual or entity shall not be deemed ineligible because the individual or entity used Federal facilities or consulted with Federal employees during the Challenge if the facilities and employees are made available to all individuals and entities participating in the Challenge on an equitable basis.
  12. Each individual retains title and full ownership in and to their submission and each participant expressly reserves all intellectual property rights (e.g., copyright) in their submission. However, each participant grants to DCoE PH TBI, and others acting on behalf of DCoE PH TBI, a royalty-free non-exclusive worldwide license to use, copy for use, and display publicly all parts of the submission for the purposes of the Challenge. This license may include posting or linking to the submission on the official DCoE PH TBI Web site and making it available for use by the public.
  13. The DCoE PH TBI reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to (a) cancel, suspend, or modify the Challenge, and/or (b) not award any prizes if no entries are deemed worthy.
  14. Each individual agrees to follow applicable local, State, and Federal laws and regulations.
  15. Each individual 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.

Judging Criteria

Mission Impact
The degree of positive effect that the idea is expected to have on the larger DCoE mission (to improve the lives of our nation's Service members, veterans and their families by advancing excellence in psychological health and traumatic brain injury prevention and care)

Extent to which DCoE could implement the solution technically, procedurally and operationally

Extent to which the idea effectively addresses a critical unmet need for those living with PTSD and/or TBI (or extent of the damage that would take place if the problem remains unsolved)

Return on Investment
The potential impact of the idea relative to the effort of implementation

Reach and/or Depth
Extent to which the solution will reach a large number of people

Innovative Approach
Extent to which the solution is unique and has not been done before

Endorsements (Votes)
Judges will take into account the number of endorsements and comments for each submission. Positive comments that are specific and describe why the submission is innovative and viable are especially valuable for judging purposes

How To Enter