TriHealth earns HIMSS Davies Award for pop health innovation

Data-driven partnerships with skilled nursing facilities helped the Ohio health system improve care outcomes and lower costs.
By Mike Miliard
02:22 PM
exterior view of TriHealth in Cinncinati Ohio

Cincinnati-based TriHealth is the most recent recipient of a 2018 HIMSS Davies Enterprise Award, recognized for its use of health IT for improved patient experience, population health management and cost reduction.

TriHealth is the third system to achieve a Davies. Earlier this month, Mercy Health collected a Davies for creating innovative tactics in fighting the opioid crisis, notably using data analytics and clinical decision support tools to make it easier for doctors to reduce opioid prescriptions as part of its broader effort to improve pain management approaches. And in late August, Ochsner took home a Davies for its work integrating a number of digital tools with its EHR to improve how it treats patients with high blood pressure and diabetes.

TriHealth, for its part, was recognized for its collaborative spirit, including partnerships with skilled nursing facilities. With those partnerships, however, came challenges with capturing and using SNF performance and quality data.

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So TriHealth developed an automated strategy to report out quality performance for its preferred provider network, helping improve communication with SNF partners and enabling improved utilization of those prefered providers and decreased readmissions from the SNFs.

It created a secure documentation tool that allowed SNF partners to access TriHealth’s electronic health record system and document key quality metrics.

With that project, the Advanced Quality Outcome Initiative, TriHealth was able to reduce length of stay and readmissions in key service lines for patients going to a preferred provider, while also reducing data collection and reporting for its own team members.

"TriHealth is leveraging data and market share to improve outcomes and lower readmissions for patients who require skilled nursing care,” said Jonathan French, senior director of quality and value-based care at HIMSS, in a statement. "By requiring SNF partners to document care delivery in a structured form, the organization has access to data that helps determine which SNFs are the best places for patients to recover. In doing so, they are driving all the SNFs in the Cincinnati market to improve care while lowering readmissions and costs for the health system."

In addition to its work with SNFs, the health system was also recognized by HIMSS for its innovation with strategic payment and surgical optimization.

To enable more accurate data for its value-based contracts, for instance, TriHealth convened multidisciplinary workgroup to develop a process to reconcile claims and EHR data to ensure that payer data reflected its improved care delivery.

And to boost care coordination between surgical patients and their primary care providers, the health system, in partnership with National Perioperative Learning Collaborative, created a perioperative surgical home program to help reduce readmissions, same-day surgical case cancellations and surgical site infections.

"Developing innovative solutions that transform the way we deliver care to our community is critical to our mission at TriHealth," added John Ward, TriHealth's chief information officer. "Our strong culture of multi-disciplinary partnership has allowed us to join technology and processes in a manner that has made significant impacts to our organization and, most importantly, our patients."

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Above photo: Dr Gamaliel Tan (in grey), Group CMIO, NUHS during NTFGH's HIMSS EMRAM 7 revalidation (virtual) in November 2020. Credit: NTFGH

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