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Informational Only

This challenge is no longer accepting new submissions.

Opioid Overdose Prevention Challenge

Prevent deaths from opioid overdose and support treatment and recovery!

Department of Health and Human Services - Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Total Cash Prizes Offered: $22,500
Type of Challenge: Software and apps
Submission Start: 06/01/2015 09:00 AM ET
Submission End: 07/29/2015 11:59 PM ET


Submit an innovative tool or app to prevent opioid-related overdoses. Win cash. Help save lives.

Overdose is common among people who use illicit opioids such as heroin, and among those who misuse medications prescribed for pain. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), an operating division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, invites developers to create an innovative, software-based solution that helps people understand what to do if a family member or friend overdoses on heroin or opioid pain medications.  No need to create new content—this is a chance to get creative with how to present existing opioid overdose prevention information (see “REQUIREMENTS” below and the Rules tab for more information).

Think you have a $10,000 idea? See the Rules  for full requirements and information on how to enter this challenge. ELIGIBILITY This challenge is open to Individuals (legal U.S. residents and citizens at least 18 years of age at the time of entry); Teams of eligible individuals; and Organizations (up to 100 employees).

REQUIREMENTS Content: You must use the information on opioid overdose prevention in the SAMHSA Opioid Overdose Toolkit section, Five Essential Steps for First Responders,as the content for your product. You must also include the assets included in the Opioid Overdose Prevention Challenge Asset file. You may not substantially alter the meaning, intent, or otherwise misrepresent the content from SAMHSA’s Opioid Overdose Toolkit in whole or in part. The intention of this clause is to ensure that the integrity of the content is maintained.

Audience: Your submission should be developed for friends, family, and caregivers of people using opioids, and people concerned about someone at risk for overdose. You must utilize the use cases provided as examples of the audience you are developing the product for.

Platforms: Your submission must include a software component such as:

  • a native smartphone or tablet app (iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile)
  • a Web app
  • a desktop app (Windows PC, Mac Desktop) 
New and Existing Solutions: Submissions may be newly created or pre-existing products modified to meet the content and requirements of this Challenge.

Supplementary Materials: You must submit a brief demo video of no more than five (5) minutes that demonstrates and explains the product, uploaded to ChallengePost and YouTube. You must also submit at least one (1) image/screenshot of your working product.

If you’re among the top five finalists, you may also be asked to participate in a webinar session with the judging panel to explain your product further.

Testing: You must make your product available for no charge to judges for evaluation during the judging period. 

Availability: A free version of your product must be made available free of cost to the public for at least one (1) calendar year.

See the Rules tab for full eligibility and submission requirements.


First Prize
Cash Prize Amount: $10000
Ten Thousand Dollars

Second Prize
Cash Prize Amount: $7500
Seven Thousand Five Hundred Dollars

Third Prize
Cash Prize Amount: $5000
Five Thousand Dollars


The Rules can be viewed on the Federal Register.

Judging Criteria

Quality of Performance
Percentage: 40
Includes how well the Application functions technically, and extent to which the Application responds to the Competition topic and target audience, and how thoroughly and clearly the solution utilizes the required assets.

Quality of User Experience
Percentage: 25
Includes visual aesthetic and ease of use.

Potential Impact
Percentage: 25
Includes the potential impact related to successfully informing target audiences about how to prevent opioid overdoses and provide a spectrum of additional support for the prevention, treatment and recovery of opioid misuse and abuse.

Feasibility of Use
Percentage: 10
Includes how easily target audiences and members of the public can access and use the Application.

How To Enter

Before entering the contest, please review the rules and eligibility requirements on
  1. Create an account or log in with an existing ChallengePost account.
  2. On CHALLENGE PAGE URL, click on the Register button to confirm your interest in participating. This step ensures that you will receive important challenge updates.
  3. Visit SAMHSA’s Store to access the SAMHSA Opioid Overdose Toolkit.
  4. Create your product!
  5. Provide a link to a website or app store where your application can be accessed or downloaded free of charge by SAMHSA, ChallengePost, and the judges OR provide a free login.
  6. Confirm that you have read and agree to the Official Rules, and submit your app by including:
    • a title, and one or more images of the app;
    • a video (5 minutes or less) demonstrating the working app on a phone or tablet, Web browser, Mac or PC computer, or an emulator;
    • a text description of the app’s functionality;
    • a text description of testing instructions for the app (including operating system, device, or testing environment requirements, etc.)
    • URL link to your app, and all other required submission form fields.