This Week in CHCACTion!
June 24, 2019
Editor's Note: It has been my privilege to publish this newsletter weekly for the past 7+ years, sharing the good works of CT's health centers. Let's keep working together improve the health and well-being of all Connecticut residents! - Deb
This Week in CHCACTivities
The switch to using electronic health records (EHRs) over the last decade or so has provided health centers with the opportunity to more securely store patient information, as well as utilize patient data towards improved health. The key to harnessing the power of data is to cultivate its use in normal, everyday processes. By doing so, a culture shifts and data become a regular part of the conversation among all staff throughout the organization.
What does that data look like and how is being used? Here are a few ways data has become an integral part of workflow among the Connecticut health centers:
Uniform Data Set (UDS): HRSA requires that FQHCs and Look-A-Likes submit a data package of operational, demographic, clinical, and financial data each calendar year. The health centers use pieces of this data set as Key Performance Indicators and most monitor on a monthly basis. UDS data are also publicly available online, allowing health centers to compare their data with other providers.
Clinical Dashboards: Many of the health centers use a daily “Huddle” report to identify the care gaps of the patients on the schedule for the day. The care team then decides who will address the care gap with the patient, whether it’s the MA screening for depression, or the nurse administering an immunization, or the provider counseling the patient on tobacco cessation. The health centers also trend Clinical Quality Measures by care team, site, and organization over time to monitor the health of the patient population. The trends are then used to identify opportunities for process improvement.
New Patients: Through DataCision, a data warehouse of health center clinical summaries that CHCACT maintains, the participating health centers receive a monthly report package that looks at some business measures like new patients seen, transition rate from pediatric to adult care, and “escape rates” for new patients who never return.
As data becomes more transparent and presented in more user friendly ways, the opportunities to act on the data will continue to grow. The next areas of focus in the data realm are predictive analytics and artificial intelligence. Leveraging predictive analytics to reduce patient no-shows would have a significant financial impact on health center operations, while using artificial intelligence to identify diabetic retinopathy in screening images would reduce costs and provider burden.
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This Week in Health Policy News
Here is a sampling of health policy news from around the state. If you see something in your local newspaper that you would like featured here in future weeks, please contact Deb Polun at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out all the Health Policy News from the past month here!
6.18.19 CT Mirror — Incidents of Harm & Abuse at Whiting Trending Down (feat. InterCommunity)
6.18.19 Register Citizen — Torrington Health Center to Hold Diabetes Workshop
6.18.19 We-Ha — West Hartford Resident Named Executive Director of CAFCA (feat. CHCACT)
6.20.19 CT Mirror — Legislative Leaders Press Health Commissioner on Religious Vaccine Exemption
6.19.19 Hartford Courant — No Awkward Conversations – DPH Promotes Confidential Notification Service, Aiming to Reduce Spread of STDs
6.18.19 CT Latino News — CT’s Cities Cannot Afford an Undercount of Undocumented Immigrants
6.20.19 CT NewsJunkie — Study Finds Reinsurance Waiver May Have Saved Consumers Money
6.19.19 NBC News — Latinos Face Health Setbacks if Trump Administration Loosens Language Rules
6.20.19 CT Health I-Team — Stricter Rules For SNAP Would Hurt Those That Need It Most
6.20.19 Politico — Appeals Court Says Trump’s Family Planning Restrictions Can Take Effect
6.19.19 CT NewsJunkie — Anti-Poverty Advocates Blast Trump Administration Proposal To Change Poverty Measure