[Health] Data never sleeps

By April 7, 2016 No Comments


(This is a Part 2 of a two part series on Privacy and Security in the Millennial World.  Part 1 is here).


If supply and demand were to be applied to the Big Data industry, we are in a data glut.  As the above infographic from DOMO showcases, in the span of just one minute:

  • Facebook users share 2,460,000 pieces of content;
  • Twitter users tweet 277,000 times;
  • Apple users download 48,000 apps;
  • email users send 204,000,000 messages
  • Google receives over 4,000,000 search queries
  • and Amazon makes $83,000 in online sales.


In one minute

A universe comprised of over 2.4 billion internet users produces so much data that database development and maintenance cannot keep pace with the potential, let alone meet the current demands of researchers, producers and marketers who must consider the implications of this scale of data.


As we try to wrap our heads around the amount of data that is being generated every day in healthcare and the implications of this data on our everyday lives, the questions around managing our data become framed in a much larger, albeit shifting, landscape.


At Maternity Neighborhood, we have been thinking about storing, protecting and managing healthcare data since we first ventured into the digital health space in 2011. We carefully consider every implication of our data storage and privacy policies and in each and every step of the process, we continuously strive for transparency and honesty in both our actions and intentions with personal client information and de-identified health information stored on our platform.


We start with our mission

Maternity Neighborhood has a mission.  It’s a big vision type of thing, something that we can only aspire to achieve but that makes itself known in every policy, feature and function that we put into practice.  All decisions are held to the standard of the mission, and those that don’t hold up are continuously re-evaluated and re-aligned.  The mission is simple:  Healthy Women, Healthy Babies, Healthy Families.


How are we going to get there?

To achieve the mission, we need to scale systems of care delivery that work…  Period.  As a platform that tracks the episode of pregnancy from the woman’s perspective, we get that unless we report out on the outcomes of her care…good care won’t necessarily happen more often.  We also get that unless we report out on outcomes for better models of care…bad care will continue to be reimbursed as easily as good care. As  a commercial company with employees and shareholders, we get that we need to exist for our customers for the long haul.  That means that we must continuously evaluate our business strategic goals and push to deliver a valuable product at a price that our customers can sustain.


In this way we have set up Maternity Neighborhood, Inc to profit as our customers profit.  Our customers (maternity care providers  and payers) in turn are set up to profit by using Maternity Neighborhood because:

  • Our tools make effective care more efficient
  • Our potential to report on outcomes across the platform is getting the attention of policymakers
  • Pregnant women are part of that 2.4 billion strong community of internet users who would like to access their health information on the internet.
  • Our customers will get more clients and benefit from new payment models which value higher quality care.


All of this potential, hinges on one key thing…your data. With your practice’s de-identified data, Maternity Neighborhood can look at trends in outcomes among our users.  This can start to tell the story of community based maternity care, primarily delivered by midwives.  We can tell stories about preterm birth and c-section rates (all very important to health care payers) among a demographically diverse population of women cared for by our users.


And the results, please?

From the get-go, Maternity Neighborhood’s EHR was designed to maximize women’s participation in their care. Providers and clients share access to the medical record and, messaging within the EHR, enables secure communication between the provider and patient. The vast majority of patients take advantage of having access to their medical record, with 84% logging in to their record at least once during their pregnancy. Messaging has also been widely used, with patients sending an average of 2.6 messages during a four month period of care.


With the addition of MN Care Guide™, we take patient engagement to a whole new level. MN Care Guide™ is an innovative tool that aims to engage women in their care and support shared decision making, by electronically delivering timely information and by allowing patients to communicate with their provider about the information they are reading. MN Care Guide™ increases women’s engagement in care by providing evidence based resources and facilitating discussion through secure messaging. For practices that have adopted MN Care Guide™ there has been an almost 40% increase in patient engagement from pre-MN Care Guide™ levels (when only the EHR was being used). Prior to the availability of MN Care Guide™ practices using Maternity Neighborhood EHR saw patients logging in and sending an average of 5 messages per episode of care, since the launch of MN Care Guide™ the same practices have seen the average number of client messages increase to 8 per episode of care.


chart2Patients in practices using MN Care Guide™ are sending messages at almost 3 times the rate of patients in practices not using the MN Care Guide™.


We have a long way to go in our explorations of the rich data produced on the Maternity Neighborhood platform.  What we do know, is that our innovative platform, can revolutionize clinical outcomes research, by linking women’s quality of care  experience to their clinical outcome data.  In our work on the Strong Start project, with AABC, using our platform (the survey functionality in MN Care Guide™), we were able to ask women about their experience, knowledge and perceptions  throughout their care.  Women’s survey responses are then linked to clinical outcome data in the electronic health record or as in the case of AABC, the Perinatal Data Registry.  These data serve to highlight not only women’s expectations and experience of care but to examine the relationship between women’s expectations and experience of care with outcomes of care. We are in the early stages of analyzing these data and look forward to sharing results as they are available.


Healthy Women, Healthy Babies, Healthy Families…one step at a time.


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