The role of the Gilead hackathon was to ignite interest from the tech community in helping to solve one of the top global health crises, leveraging the brightest minds, members of the community, and health leaders from around the world.

Nearly 400 global participants were challenged to design software solutions to improve the lives of people infected by or at risk for HIV infection in the most at-risk regions. Gilead expected to identify one or more prototypes by the end of the hackathon – potential new and effective digital tools to improve HIV prevention, care, and treatment globally. Over 40 projects were submitted and 35 made it into the initial phase of judging.

Dozens of innovative prototype tools were hatched by the hackathon, including projects that aim to increase access to mental health services and police protection, support youth at risk for HIV infection, fight stigma by utilizing social media and games, increase knowledge, skills, and agency of individuals from high-risk populations looking for culturally appropriate information, and provide better access to testing and medical services.


Key Takeaways:

  • Awarded $45,000 in cash prizes to support further development of winning projects
  • Created a network of hundreds of global technology professionals
  • Organized an expert, interdisciplinary, cross-sector, multicultural panel of judges
  • Facilitated access to expert technical mentors
  • Engaged cross-functional Gilead staff across the enterprise


The Top 10 Winners (in no particular order): 

  • CoitoCare (Hungary)
  • The Drop (South Africa)
  • HHH: HIV Hoopoe Hope (France)
  • Hive Healthcare (USA)
  • Kiki (Brazil)
  • Risky Bets (USA)
  • Tenaye (Ethiopia)
  • Testme4all (Switzerland)
  • TransHelp (Pakistan)
  • YOUnite PH (Philippines)


Lessons learned are plentiful and will be detailed elsewhere at a later time.