Whole person analytics creates healthier communities

Whole person analytics can improve access to care by decreasing stigma and discrimination and empowering person-centered care.

People across the country (and world) are not getting the care they need. There are many data efforts to address that, but I personally believe traditional analytics are short-sighted, too illness-focused, and remarkably negative.

We need to take a more holistic approach to data, policy, and health care, including traditional medical as well as behavioral health.

Whole person analytics can improve access to care by decreasing stigma and discrimination and empowering person-centered care. A whole person approach can also convey a more accurate impact of services and programs and provide data-driven guidance to policy and benefits packages.

In a new paper outlining the value of whole person analytics to improve community health, I propose that federal, state and local govern­ments; managed care organizations; and policymakers must redefine and reconceptualize:

  • Health to be more holistic by including social determinants, strengths and non-health outcomes.
  • Treatment compliance as treatment adherence, becoming more person-centered, recognizing the legitimate barriers to care and focusing on the health system’s role in treatment activation.
  • Value and return on investment to include multiple health and non-health systems as well as the human impact of all services (strengths-based perfor­mance outcomes) on individual lives and the community.

We need these changes because what is valued in policy is what is measured, and what is measured ends up driving individual actions, treatment plans and interventions. For better and for worse. Let’s make it consistently for the better!

Please join me at one of these up-coming events, where I’ll be talking more about the power of whole person analytics. I’d love to discuss this more in person! Two highlights:

  • Next week, Jay King, Director of Solution Development in our Advanced Analytics Lab, and I will be presenting at the Medicaid Enterprise Systems Conference about how increasingly advanced analytic approaches, including artificial intelligence and machine learning, in a whole person care framework can empower insights to organizations at any analytics level. We’ll also be at the SAS booth (Booth 59) throughout the week.
  • In September, our Analytics Experience conference is in San Diego and will have plenty of opportunities to talk about innovative applications of analytics. I’m also organizing a couple of special sessions just for those in the public sector!

In the meantime, I’d love you to read the new paper on the value of whole person analytics and share your thoughts in the comments on how policies and health benefits might change if we valued and measured whole person outcomes such as strengths and social determinants.



About Author

Josh Morgan

National Director of Behavioral Health and Whole Person Care

As SAS’ National Director of Behavioral Health and Whole Person Care, Dr. Josh Morgan helps public sector health agencies use data and analytics to support a person-centered approach to improving health outcomes. A licensed psychologist, Dr. Morgan was previously San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health’s Chief of Behavioral Health Informatics. His clinical work includes adolescent self-injury, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient programs, psychiatric inpatient units and university counseling centers. Dr. Morgan earned his Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PsyD (Doctor of Psychology) in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Family Psychology from Azusa Pacific University, and is trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy.

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