Improving Patient Outcomes Through Data

News

In a new article in the American Journal of Managed Care, Dr. Gregory Hess and Dr. Aimee Delorey of Symphony Health discuss new ways to improve patient outcomes using data. Here is an excerpt of the story:

“Healthcare experts are the first to say that data hold the key to developing an understanding of patients and their behaviors. Unfortunately, most of the data informing this understanding comes from limited or incomplete sources, such as large scale claims databases and customer relationship management (CRM) systems. According to a 2015 study from McKinsey & Company, 95% of patient data resides outside of the care management system. This gap in data presents a significant barrier, as well as an opportunity, to a gain a more nuanced, actionable understanding of patient behavior. While this may seem like a minor issue that only affects clinicians and pharmaceutical companies, it ultimately reaches back to the patient, and many don’t receive the maximum benefit of care as a result.

To improve our understanding of patients, we must merge traditional data with new sources as a way of identifying influential behavior, attitudes, and life circumstances that lead to patient decision making and ultimately to clinical outcomes. For example, a 2016 study by the SAS Institute merged third party consumer data with claims data to predict healthcare utilization risk and costs.1 What they found was that television usage patterns, mail-order buying habits (including the purchasing of prescriptions via mail) and investments in stocks and bonds were all variables with predictive power helping to understand a patient’s risk for particular outcomes and the related cost.”

Read the full article here.