Social Determinants Updates

November 16 – December 6, 2019

Welcome to this week’s edition of Aligning for Health’s Social Determinants Updates newsletter. We hope it will be a helpful and informative biweekly compilation of news, reports, events, and opportunities. 

News Clips and Reports 

Forbes: (12/5) – One of the sessions at the Forbes Healthcare Summit discussed eight potential solutions to address social determinants of health “right here, right now.”

Health Leaders Media: (12/5) – A hospital in New Ulm, Minnesota has partnered with a local payer to split the payroll expense of a social worker to curb ER overuse and connect frequent ED users to social services that may be underlying their ED over usage.

Patient Engagement HIT: (12/4) – Nurses are essential figures in healthcare that are perfectly positioned to address social determinants of health by fostering strong patient relationships and driving a quality patient experience, but adequately addressing social determinants requires training, community resources and clinical integration.

Becker’s Hospital Review: (12/4) – Democratic Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg proposed creating a task force within his first 100 days that would be in charge of developing a federal strategy to eliminate health disparities and give CMMI authority to pilot new payment models that would tackle social determinants of health.

Health Affairs: (December Issue) – A new study from the University of Minnesota and the University of Michigan found that rural residents are at greater risk of maternal morbidity and mortality compared to urban residents.

Becker’s Hospital Review: (12/3) – A food delivery service implemented by Health Plan Partners reduced hospital admissions by 28 percent and reduced emergency department visits over a two-year period

Inside Health Policy: (12/3) – CMMI is working on a new payment model to improve maternal health outcomes following calls for a demo from advocates and stakeholders.

EHR Intelligence: (12/3) – Wayne State University received a $500,000 grant from the Michigan Health Endowment Fund to implement the Population Health Outcomes and Information EXChange (PHOENIX), which will function as a health information exchange by collecting population health data to determine how community factors may be contributing to health concerns.

BioSpace: (12/3) – ProMedica announced a commitment to social determinants of health through the creation of the Ebeid Data Nerve Center and partnership with Socially Determined, a health care data analytics company.

Patient Engagement HIT: (12/2) – A new study published in JAMA Network Open suggests that there is more involved in solving health equity than creating equal access to certain resources.

The Sacramento Bee: (11/2) – Kaiser Permanente has been using text messages to sign up more than 11,000 of its California members for the CalFresh government program which would give them up to $200 a month for groceries.

Duke University: (12/1) – A research article from Duke University examined the efforts to address social determinants of health in Oregon as part of its 2012 Medicaid waiver, analyzing strategies from the demonstration that can help states and federal governments as they work to address social determinants.

Business Insider: (11/30) – Life expectancy in the U.S. has declined for the third straight year, and a new study says that America’s worsening inequality could be to blame.

Modern Healthcare: (11/30) – Precision public health is emerging as a new buzzword, looking to use the same technologies that propel precision medicine in a parallel effort to possibly leverage analytics to forecast and prevent health threats, but not everyone is behind this new approach.

Patient Engagement HIT: (11/27) – A study from the University of Michigan Medical School used Twitter to conduct community-based demographic and health status surveys and learn more about the types of  foods that individuals living in certain neighborhoods consumed, individuals’ attitudes around certain types of foods, and the health outcomes they might experience due to diet.

Becker’s Hospital Review: (11/27) – Molina Healthcare of Washington awarded $1 million to 16 Washington-based nonprofit organizations focused on addressing social determinants of health and reducing barriers to healthcare access for Medicaid beneficiaries in regions of the state that have implemented Washington’s Integrated Managed Care program.

Medical Bag: (11/26) – A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine highlighted the significant burden that food insecurity poses to Medicare beneficiaries, as food insecurity was associated with low income, comorbid chronic conditions, depression, or anxiety.

JAMA: (11/26) – A study in JAMA using life expectancy data from 1959-2016 found U.S. life expectancy has not kept pace with that of other wealthy countries and is now decreasing

Patient Engagement HIT: (11/25) – The current primary care model isn’t fitting the needs of low-income vulnerable patient populations, with most calling for a more personal, patient-centered experience, according to the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation.

JAMA Forum: (11/25) – An article in JAMA examines issues in the way budgeting across governmental departments works in relation to addressing social determinants of health and offers several suggestions on how to fix these “wrong pocket” problems.

Patient Engagement HIT: (11/22) – Indiana University Health invested $100 million for social determinants of health programs which will fund yearly initiatives aimed at addressing specific social risk factors that impact patients living across Indiana like social isolation, food security and infant mortality.

National Institute on Aging: (11/20) – The National Institute on Aging, in partnership with the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities at the NIH, has funded a new publicly available tool called The Neighborhood Atlas that enables customized ranking and mapping of neighborhoods according to socioeconomic disadvantage across the U.S.

Campaign for Action: (11/20) – The Campaign for Action’s newly developed Health Equity Toolkit provides in one place the tools, resources and information that nurses, Action Coalitions, and their partners, need to help their communities by tacking the social determinants of health.

Health Payer Intelligence: (11/19) – Payer philanthropy highlights the need to address the social determinants of health, but it is not the solution because of lack of skin in the game, according to Dr. Jacob Reider.

Healthcare Dive: (11/19) – Providers like Atrium Health have taken the next step in impacting social determinants of health using hyperlocalism by using data to identify needs and working with community organizations to meet them.

U.S. News: (11/18) – Factors like hunger and homelessness have a direct impact on health, but determining socioeconomic need can be difficult for doctors.

Patient Engagement HIT: (11/18) – New data from the Annals of Family Medicine suggests that integrating social determinants of health interventions into primary care can combat clinician burnout issues.

Robert Johnson Wood Foundation: (11/12) – Despite strong links between health and social conditions, inequities in social determinants of health have traditionally been viewed as beyond the purview of healthcare. This sentiment is rapidly changing, and this article highlights some initiatives making health care institutions more equitable and improving the social conditions of individual patients.

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