Social determinants of health (SDOH) are discussed in the healthcare industry as a way to understand more about patients, but data on patients’ social experience varies greatly in its content, collection methods and use by organizations. The March 2021 Healthcare Innovation virtual series, supported by LexisNexis Risk Solutions Health Care, recently hosted a virtual panel featuring experts in the field discussing SDOH efforts and data.
An estimated 41% of people with chronic conditions like COPD, diabetes and congestive heart failure have avoided or delayed medical care, fearing exposure to the virus. By avoiding routine care, your members may be getting sicker and experiencing poorer overall health outcomes, which would then negatively impact your plan’s quality ratings.
When organizations are able to analyze data on these patients’ healthcare activities, but also the social determinants that impact their lives outside of the healthcare system, they can really understand the patients’ barriers to care — and take steps to assemble resources that will improve patient outcomes.
Now is the time for healthcare organizations to incorporate SDOH into their clinical workflows. Doing so can save time, money, and resources; it can increase patient engagement; and, overall, it can improve patient care.
As the country continues to realize the impacts of COVID-19, the healthcare industry’s unwavering commitment to improve health outcomes for patients is one of a few remaining constants. As the demand for equipment, personnel and space to sustain the increased volume of patients who require COVID care and treatment surges, so does the need for data driven insights to help make decisions and formulate response and care strategies.