Focus on Social Determinants of Health

Social determinants of health: The next stage of value-based care

A decade ago, who would have thought that in addition to treating the sick, hospitals and physicians would become providers of housing, transportation, food and other needs? As the industry has shifted to value-based care, many providers have found that investing in programs that address the social determinants of health is a way to tackle some of the root causes of illness, behavioral health challenges, readmissions and emergency room overuse. In September, Healthcare Finance News, Healthcare IT News and MobiHealthNews will explore the many facets of SDOH, and how health systems, payers, vendors, policymakers and others are addressing them.
– Susan Morse, Senior Editor, Healthcare Finance News

What you need to know

News

How SDOH will influence the next wave of health tech startups

by Bill Siwicki

The industry already has seen some startups working with social determinants of health. Their number will only increase as healthcare moves to value-based care and needs more data.

News

Medicaid may be the driver to reducing costs

by Susan Morse

Medicaid serves the population most adversely impacted by the social determinants of health.

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More inclusive EHRs can help extend welcome, save transgender lives

by Jonah Comstock

Boston's Massachusetts General Hospital is one of many across the country adding sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) information to its clinical systems.

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Major new report calls for better integration of social determinants of health

by Mike Miliard

Providers nationwide need to make an organizational commitment to addressing social needs and health disparities, says the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine – and policymakers need to sort out IT infrastructure and reimbursement.

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How HHS is innovating data aggregation and visualization to boost pop health

by Mike Miliard

At Health 2.0, HHS Chief Data Officer Mona Siddiqui spotlighted recent efforts, including some cloud-based dynamic data and mapping tools, to link far-flung data for better public health.

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Patient advocates: Tech can help improve experience, but empathy is most important

by Jonah Comstock

What patients want from a healthcare provider is surprisingly uncomplicated. They want convenience. They want quality care. And they want empathy at a scary time in their lives.

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Few Medicare Advantage insurers use new benefit flexibility to address the social determinants of health

by Susan Morse

Plans are hampered by current CMS policy and provider coding that often does not reflect social needs, Urban Institute report says.

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National Health IT Week kicks off with a focus on healthy communities

by Mike Miliard
For its 13th annual National Health IT Week, which kicks off today and runs through Sept. 27, HIMSS
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Pop health IT helps Partners in Recovery reduce psychiatric hospital admissions by 50%

by Bill Siwicki

Combining psychiatric and primary care data, including social determinants of health, has also helped reduce ER spending from $2,265 per patient per month to just $875.

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Majority of hospitals, physician practices screen patients for at least one SDOH, Dartmouth study finds

by Jeff Lagasse

The pressure on physicians and hospitals to address social determinants will likely increase, as they've been a focus of payers and providers.

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Few Medicare Advantage insurers use new benefit flexibility to address the social determinants of health

by Susan Morse

Plans are hampered by current CMS policy and provider coding that often does not reflect social needs, Urban Institute report says.

News

How cloud hosting can help with management of SDOH data

by Nathan Eddy

Two consultants explain how the agility of remote hosting can boost readiness for social determinant of health initiatives – and spotlight the privacy and security concerns that must be prioritized.

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Novant Health taps Jvion as first partner for its new AI institute

by Mike Miliard

The prescriptive analytics company will start by helping researchers the Novant Health Institute of Innovation & Artificial Intelligence reduce readmissions for congestive heart failure.

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At Health 2.0, new technologies, new ideas 'storming the battlements'

by Mike Miliard

The conversation isn't just about apps anymore – it's about robust, patient-centered platforms that are changing the calculus for care delivery in a consumer-centered age.

News

Health system takes an 'Epic first' approach to integrating all data, including SDOH

by Bill Siwicki

Contra Costa Health Services takes on whole person care by gathering every bit of data, not just medical care data, and getting it into its Epic EHR. The results have been startling.

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How Kaiser Permanente and Enterprise are investing in affordable housing

by Susan Morse

In high-priced areas in California, the partnership is working to keep affordable apartments from becoming the next million dollar condos.

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North Carolina taps Phreesia to help with social determinants of health

by Mike Miliard
As part of its Healthy Opportunities Initiative, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human S
News

SDOH: Emergency department openings and closures have an impact on heart attack patients

by Jeff Lagasse

Hospital closures represent a not-often reported social determinant of health, as they stress patient resources.

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Rural hospital closures having an impact on mortality rates

by Jeff Lagasse

Because access to health services can be an issue in rural locales, rural hospital closings had a profound impact.

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All healthcare is local: Blue Shield of California and L.A. Care invest $146 million in community health

by Susan Morse

Plans will jointly operate 14 community resource centers across Los Angeles that will leverage personalized technology solutions to improve health.

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New technologies for evidence-based care are boosting patient outcomes

by Mike Miliard

At Health 2.0 this month, seven disparate companies will show how their apps and platforms are being put to work leveraging clinical and social data to drive innovations in care delivery.

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How artificial intelligence can allow providers to get a better handle on social determinants of health data

by Jeff Lagasse

AI and SDOH developed separately, but they're now converging as technology keeps up with the need to make actionable use of data.

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New alliance negotiates with health plans to address the social determinants of health

by Susan Morse

First-of-its-kind partnership uses IT to connect patients to social service organizations in upstate New York.

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Investments in social determinants will pay off, with better outcomes and value

by Mike Miliard

Momentum for more forward-looking SDOH initiatives is building across healthcare, as stakeholders recognize the key role of socioeconomic factors, environment and community in better health and wellness. But unlocking ROI will take some work.

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To address social determinants, let data shape partnerships

by Benjamin Harris
For much of the history of modern medicine, the model has been that patients go to the hospital or p
News

U.S. spends more on healthcare, but not on social services spending, study finds

by Jeff Lagasse

Countries that spent more on social services tended to spend more on healthcare, even after adjusting for poverty and unemployment rates.

Video

Identifying ROI for social determinants of health

by HIMSS TV

Investments in social care will reduce the cost of medical care, says Dr. Jacob Reider, CEO of Alliance for Better Health.

News

IPA, insurer launch new partnership to manage social determinants of health

by Mike Miliard

Healthy Alliance IPA, led by former ONC deputy Dr. Jacob Reider, will work with MVP Health Care to connect social services and healthcare providers via the Unite Us technology platform. The aim: strengthening community organizations, boosting pop health and reducing costs.

Video

Using cloud-based analytics to manage social determinants of health

by HIMSS TV

Salesforce Health Cloud can help providers aggregate, analyze and make actionable the data providers need to address social determinants of health, says Dr. Joshua Newman, chief medical officer at Salesforce.

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Blue Shield of California targets wellness goals through personalized health platform

by Mark Klimek

New approach seeks to improve lifestyle choices and outcomes by steering members toward "best fit" health apps and providers.

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How Mount Sinai is using AI to unlock social determinant data in the EHR

by Mike Miliard

A natural language processing algorithm has been helping the New York health system gain new insights from its unstructured notes, boosting its value-based care and pop health efforts.

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Q&A with Andy Slavitt on investing in underserved populations

by Susan Morse

"Medicaid is filled with success stories, but not the capital," Slavitt says.

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28 health systems in Medicaid Transformation Project look to lower costs and improve outcomes in behavioral health

by Susan Morse

The national project is aimed at developing financially sustainable solutions to improve the health of underserved individuals and save money.

Video

Making strides in getting social determinants into the EHR

by HIMSS TV

Health economist Jane Sarasohn-Kahn, however, says the industry still has miles to go before public policies align with social determinants of health.

News

Social determinants of health data can be difficult to collect and share, but it's imperative to success

by Jeff Lagasse

It's the early days of data sharing and community partnerships when it comes to SDOH, but there are things providers can do now.

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Vast majority of patients would show more loyalty to providers if they had access to holistic health and wellbeing support

by Jeff Lagasse

Most adults say it's important their provider offer programs and resources, but they don't want it through patient portals.

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Screenings for social determinants of health need to be tailored to clinics, BU finds

by Jeff Lagasse

The average health center only screened for 8 of the 16 domains in the pilot's standardized screening.

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Certain hospitals turn away ambulances when the patient is more likely to be poor, study shows

by Jeff Lagasse

Private hospitals are more likely to enact an ambulance diversion if a nearby public hospital is already turning away ambulances.

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Social determinants of health: getting a better picture

by Benjamin Harris

Analytics are helping providers better understand and provide care for their patient populations.

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AMA, UnitedHealthcare team up on billing codes that address social determinants of health

by Jeff Lagasse

The two organizations are working together to standardize how data is collected, processed and integrated regarding SDoH.

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BCBS Institute and Solera partner, pay SDoH organizations through outcomes-based medical claims

by Deirdre Fulton

The collaboration allows health plans to pay for healthcare-related social services delivered by community benefit organizations.

News

Time to tackle barriers to SDOH integration, says Jacob Reider

by Mike Miliard

The CEO of the Alliance for Better Health and former deputy national coordinator talks EHR and interoperability challenges, the need for ROI, physicians' changing roles and why "social determinants" might not be the right term.

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What Montefiore's 300% ROI from social determinants investments means for the future of other hospitals

by Susan Morse

The New York City health system created a program focusing on housing homeless patients that has already reaped big rewards.