Three Ways Hospitals Can Better Share Data with Doctors

By Harvard Business Review
December 14, 2018

Offering cost data and clinical evidence can empower physicians to support quality and cost goals inherent in a health system’s value-based care model.

To improve clinical, operational and financial outcomes, health systems must foster a culture that appreciates data and analytics. A survey of 276 physicians suggests that sharing cost data and clinical evidence consistently and frequently with physicians can empower them to support the quality and cost goals inherent in a health system’s value-based care model.

Here are three recommendations for health systems looking to do this:

Assess how data is shared with physicians: In most health systems, data sharing occurs at irregular intervals and in inconsistent formats. Many organizations do little beyond circulating the most basic data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ patient-satisfaction survey. And when it comes to obtaining accurate, clinically meaningful data, many health systems do not know where to start. Many administrators simply have not been trained to effectively communicate data.

RELATED: Mining Gold in Data to Boost Quality of Care, Trim Costs

Determine the appropriate amount and type of data to share: Physicians seek to improve patient outcomes and therefore want the total picture. System administrators need to provide clinicians with access to a wide range of data. Ensuring that physicians have a strong voice in determining which data to share will help create alignment and trust. Health systems should set up a centralized data-analytics department to oversee the process of streamlining, analyzing and disseminating data.

RELATED: Predictive Analytics in Health Care − Opportunity or Risk?

Compare data based on contemporary evidence-based guidelines: Physicians want to incorporate reliable data into their decision-making when selecting drugs and devices. Health systems should ensure that data is organized and presented in a way that is clinically meaningful and emphasizes high-quality patient care. Health systems should also keep data and communication simple by developing a small number of critical key performance indicators, reflecting the voices of patients, care providers and payers.

Copyright 2018 Harvard Business School Publishing Corp. Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate.

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