Building an ecosystem of support for suicide prevention innovation

Building an ecosystem of support for suicide prevention innovation

An update on Mission Daybreak, VA’s multiyear initiative to support the development of promising suicide prevention innovations.

The Veterans Health Administration has a long history of supporting health innovation on behalf of Veterans and the American people. Over the past seven decades, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has helped develop the cardiac pacemaker, electronic health records, nicotine patches, and diabetes therapeutics — among many other advancements.

In 2022, the Mission Daybreak initiative became part of VA’s innovation history with the launch of the $20 million Mission Daybreak Grand Challenge to reduce Veteran suicides. Earlier this year, VA announced the winners of the challenge, which was designed and produced by Luminary Labs through a contract with Capital Consulting Corporation. But the challenge was just the beginning: VA is now working with a range of Mission Daybreak teams to identify new collaboration opportunities and accelerate research and development.

The Veterans Health Administration’s 2023 State of Innovation Report, published this month, features the multiyear initiative to support the development of promising suicide prevention innovations. The report includes an update on VA’s support for program pilots and collaboration with promising challenge winners such as Televeda and BehaVR.

VHA Director of Open Innovation Dr. Amanda Lienau on stage at HLTH 2023.

This month at HLTH, several challenge winners — Dr. Risa Weisberg from BehaVR, David Black from Even Health, Christopher Molaro from NeuroFlow, Sam Dorison from ReflexAI, and Shruti Gurudanti from Televeda — presented their solutions to an audience of health innovation leaders. As part of the Mission Daybreak winner showcase, Dr. Amanda Lienau, Director of Open Innovation at the Veterans Health Administration, shared how our nation’s largest integrated healthcare system provided both funding and non-monetary resources –– including synthetic data, research, mentorship, educational webinars, and partnership opportunities –– to address VA’s top clinical priority and a top priority of the Biden-Harris Administration. Watch a recording of the Mission Daybreak showcase at HLTH.

Next week, Mission Daybreak winners will have another chance to connect with fellow innovators, VA employees, Veterans, industry leaders, and researchers at the 2023 VHA Innovation Experience (iEX). The event features keynote speakers and expert panels, including a Mission Daybreak panel spotlighting the teams, their solutions, and meaningful dialogue on the prevention of Veteran suicide.

Luminary Labs’ work on Mission Daybreak continues as VA supports program pilots, identifies new partnership and contracting opportunities, and accelerates research and development. Through the Mission Daybreak initiative, VA is partnering with early-stage solutions for additional human-centered design and learning through the Greenhouse Initiative, and is also running direct pilots with more developed solutions. Our team is providing active support to connect innovations within the Veterans Health Administration’s Innovation Ecosystem.