HealthLeaders Media Council Members discuss how they implement clinical analytics in their population health initiatives.
This article first appeared in the September 2016 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.
Director of Medical Economics
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas
As a payer, it's still a challenge to get clinical analytics data right now, with there being so many different EMRs in use; a common extraction system still doesn't seem to exist. We are going to do a pilot with a company that says it can provide an extraction service, but it remains to be seen if this is really possible.
I think that clinical data is the missing piece of the puzzle—we already have the claims, the member information, and the provider information, and this data piece would complete the picture we have of our members. With that said, there are probably many things we need to learn about that data that we don't know yet. It's probably going to be another three to five years before we get that kind of information.
At this point, we've got analytics all over the place, in just about every department of the company. We run analytics for membership information, provider data, everything. We look for anomalies in different data just to see if something is "sticking out" where it shouldn't be.
We used population health data most recently with our PCMH and our HMO activities. We're still new to that arena, but we've been analyzing this data for over a year now, and I think it helped us to identify potential process improvements for physician offices and factors that were outside the norm that they could work on to improve their quality and cost of care.
Lena J. Weiner is an associate editor at HealthLeaders Media.