The Power of Population Health Analytics

The average healthcare cost of an employee averages just over $10,000 a year.

Twenty percent of employees do not see a doctor on a regular basis.

You’re sitting on a time bomb.

A time bomb that population health analytics can help you diffuse.

Population health analytics are tools that can help you identify issues and target specific concerns related to your employees’ health BEFORE they become problems. Not only does targeting the problem on the front-end make a huge difference in the health and wellness of your employee, but it also saves you, the employer, money.

For example, a mammography rate of 80 percent may seem really good on the surface, but if you dig deeper through analytics and break it down between female employees and spouses of the employees, the rate becomes extremely lopsided. You now have an actual mammography rate of female employees at an abysmal 20 percent and six employees diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer – a diagnosis that could have been caught earlier with something as simple as an increased mammography rate. And if you had known that the rate was actually so low – with analytics – you could have done something about it.

“There are so many factors that affect your population’s health and the cost,” Rabih Suki, DHS Group Chief Strategy Officer, said. “Unless you have the right analytics products, you can’t pinpoint the problem. Most clients use a ‘gunshot approach,’ but with analytics you can be more effective because you have the opportunity to zero in on a specific problem and address it head on.”

In the case of the low mammography rate – with analytics showing the rate was low, you could have offered additional program rewards or benefits for taking part in a screening or even decide to bring someone in on site to perform the screening. Seeing the problem earlier won’t stop things like cancer from occurring, but it will help your employees find the problem and get treated sooner – a benefit for everyone.

To utilize population health analytics to their full strength, you have to understand that all your employees have different needs – and the analytics are going to show that.

“It always surprises employers that different divisions or geographical locations may need different interventions [based on the analytics],” Suki said.

Just like employee wellness programs are not one-size-fits-all, population health analytics, while powerful, aren’t a blanket solution to healthcare issues – but they’re a formidable place to start on the journey to prevention and population health.

“Population health analytics allow you to dig deeper into healthcare data that you have and uncover real problems that are masked by overly rolled up reports,” Suki said.

Analytics– when used properly and to their full potential – have the ability to take all the information across data sources to produce an overall picture of a population’s health and conditions to form valuable actionable items. If you’re interested in taking control over your healthcare costs with a full 360-degree view of your available data and the expertise of a team full of experts, contact DHS Group here.