- The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is establishing a commission to review how health data is collected, shared, and used in the wake of the pandemic
- Transparent health data is imperative for system and organization-wide clinical and operational improvement
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is establishing a commission to examine and reimage how national health data is collected, shared, and used. The expressed purpose the commission is to utilize their findings to reduce health inequity in the United States.
Concerns regarding health equity have increased throughout the pandemic, as the country watched the virus disproportionately impact certain Hispanic and Black Americans.
It is crucial for us to understand more about that uneven impact, and to understand more greatly how our healthcare system can be improved to advance health equity. Starting with data is a great place to start.
In fact, the utilization of data in healthcare has always been critical to patient care but is being increasingly utilized to assess and measure operational improvements as well. This trend is imperative for sustainable improvement – healthcare organizations and our healthcare system as whole can not expect to make sustainable improvements without changes being rooted in health data and metrics.
Data in Healthcare Improvement: What You Need to Know
As mentioned, health data has been part of care delivery since its infancy – how can clinicians care for patients without data? It’s not plausible.
However, prioritizing data in operational improvements hasn’t always been as commonplace. Particularly when looking to improve communication.
Why? Well, in part, measurement isn’t simple. It requires collection, access to collected data, the ability to interpret data, and the ability to apply findings. And, understandably, doing all of this takes time.
However, healthcare organizations often institute small tests of change, not rooted in data, that are more quickly achievable. These interventions may yield results, but those results are rarely substantive or sustainable.
In recognition of this, more and more hospitals and health systems are investing in quality and safety data and consulting – to make measurable improvements to their organization and care delivery.
Health Data and Clinical Communication Improvement
The utilization of health data is particularly valuable when it comes to improving clinical communication and collaboration.
In fact, collecting baseline health data is the cornerstone of the Halo Health approach to customer success. To best ensure the success of our platform in achieving customer organizational and clinical objectives, it is imperative to identify the baseline – only then can improvements truly be recognized.
We believe in this so whole-heartedly that we recommend the approach to organizations who are not yet customers but are pursuing clinical communication improvement projects. The first step in any successful project must be evaluating your current state and establish data metrics.
Data metrics for clinical communication can vary from organization to organization but range from code team activation response times to time spent waiting for return pages or calls, to percent of safety events with communication as a root cause, to number of communication systems currently in operation – just to name a few.
Learn more about our suggested approach to clinical communication improvement projects and the value of utilizing data in healthcare by watching our webinar: “Clinical Communication Improvement Projects: Where to Start to Ensure Success.”