10 Sep Democratization of Social Determinants of Health Data for Payers
In its brief history on the payer space, Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) efforts served as drivers for helping all parties in the care continuum to enhance population health. Typically, sharing this data with patients was not a common practice – until today.
Blue Shield of California recently launched an effort to make SDOH data universally available. Called the Neighborhood Health Dashboard generator, this solution allows anyone – even if they are not a Blue Shield of California member or a resident of California – to access data about any zip code or address.
“By making the data publicly available, anyone can gain a deeper understanding of the unmet social needs in their community and serve the population with increased knowledge about issues that have an impact on people’s health and wellbeing,” said Peter Long, SVP at Blue Shield of California, in this recent Health Payer Intelligence article.
With other payers most likely to replicate this kind of effort, they will be expanding their health data management and analytic capabilities. A big part of this will be considering the options between schema/structured and data lake environments for making datasets more actionable and valuable to their SDOH efforts.
Both options have their opportunities and challenges, and below is a quick summary.
The schema/structured environment serves as a more traditional storage mechanism (i.e., SQL and NoSQL). Essentially, they are built around the data elements that a payer is interested in accessing. This makes it easy to plan, normalize and standardize the data to drive analytics and make key decisions.
In the data lakes environment, the data is stored in a raw form without any really known parameters for indexing and accessing this data. The convenience is that you have a wider-range of data to access. Though accessing this data requires a high-cost of computing, hardware and infrastructure, where many technologies need to work in data to build structure for data on the fly.
As highlighted in this podcast interview, the IMAT Solutions platform offers the best of both worlds. The platform was built for all types of data and data retrieval supporting the best of a schema based and data lakes solutions. It allows users to have all of the known fields in a structured environment, while still pairing the ability to access any unstructured data at anytime.
For more about how payers can best harness their data for improved analytics, interoperability and outcomes. Learn More.
In addition, IMAT was recently named in a refresh of the Gartner report: “U.S. Healthcare Payer CIOs Boost Medicare Advantage Star Ratings Using Engagement Hubs and Insights Report.” Learn More