Data governance: 4 considerations for hospitals to balance

The eHealth Initiative Foundation, a healthcare collaborative focused on quality and safety improvement, and the healthcare division of LexisNexis Risk Solutions released a report on the importance of data governance in healthcare Aug. 20.

The eHealth Initiative Foundation and LexisNexis Risk Solutions, a data aggregation company, convened a roundtable meeting with senior executives from payers, providers, professional organizations, health information exchanges, pharmaceutical companies and other healthcare stakeholders to discuss data governance in the industry in spring 2018.

The report aims to outline expert opinions on how to make data accessible, high-quality and actionable, while also protecting patient information. For the purposes of the roundtable, data governance relates to the policies and procedures used to manage and protect information across a healthcare enterprise, including data modeling, mapping, auditing and quality controls.

"A strong data governance structure is a critical component of any healthcare organization, as it provides a structure for analytics and other complex data initiatives," the report reads.

Here are four considerations for hospitals to balance when developing a data governance program, according to experts participating in the roundtable:

1. Solve patient matching and identification issues

2. Support patient engagement and patients' access to their health information

3. Improve timing and precision of information delivery

4. Build a comprehensive picture of patients with clinical, social determinant and claims data

"A wealth of patient engagement tools are available," Jennifer Covich Bordenick, CEO of the eHealth Initiative Foundation, explained in a news release. "But organizations that hold data need to walk a fine line, ensuring data is accessible enough for patients to engage and providers to treat; while still tightly controlling access and protecting information. Data governance is about finding the right balance."

To download the eHealth Initiative Foundation and LexisNexis Risk Solutions' report, click here.

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