RWJBarnabas to screen all patients for social determinants of health

West Orange, N.J.-based RWJBarnabas Health has launched a universal social determinants of health program to regularly screen patients for factors that may contribute to chronic disease.

The health system is piloting the Health Beyond the Hospital program at several of its locations, it said Oct. 13. The initiative entails screening patients for such social determinants of health as food security, housing access and transportation in the same way healthcare providers regularly screen for temperature, weight or blood pressure. 

After a screening, clinicians can create tailored resources for the patient and "e-prescribe" services or support programs such as the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 

RWJBarnabas Health is using NowPow, a personalized digital community referral platform, and ConsejoSano, a patient engagement platform that specializes in linguistically and culturally tailored outreach, to support the new program.

The health system said it is planning a phased adoption of the program across its entire system, and the program will be fully integrated into its EHR.

Learn more about the program here.

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