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Using Data to Reduce Health Disparities and Improve Health Equity

The COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. has shown the country what all hospital and health systems leaders have known for years: Serious gaps exist in access, cost and quality for patients based on race, ethnicity, gender and gender identity, age, sexual orientation or other demographic and socio-economic factors. Hospitals and health systems have the opportunity to use data to identify outcome disparities that are the result of inequities and societal factors that influence health.

Hospitals and health systems can apply those data to drive their strategy to advance health equity. They can also use insights culled from data to identify health care disparities, find the root causes and craft targeted interventions to reduce them and improve health.

This Market Insights report from the American Hospital Association’s Center for Health Innovation offers hospital and health system leaders practical guidance and examples on how to use data to take three steps:

Hospital and health system leaders can use this report to:

  1. Identify health disparities by branching out from the usual data sets.
  2. Investigate patterns in health disparities.
  3. Intervene with education, by setting goals and measuring progress.

This report is a companion piece to a more in-depth Market Insights report from the center on how hospitals and health systems can leverage data for health innovation.