FAIR Health Analytics Help with Understanding Patient Migratory Patterns

Patient migration is a major challenge for healthcare providers such as hospitals and health systems. FAIR Health custom analytics can help providers understand these patient migratory patterns and, thus, help to inform care coordination and strategic business decisions.

Understanding Patients’ Healthcare Journeys

The dramatic rise of alternative venues of care is a vital area of interest for decision makers. Patients now have a wider array of choices for their care as an increasing number of medical procedures are being performed in diverse settings, including urgent care centers, retail clinics, telehealth and ambulatory surgery centers. Healthcare leaders and analysts need to be able to see beyond their own data to understand patients’ healthcare journeys. Healthcare claims data can illuminate those journeys.

FAIR Health data and custom analytics can show where de-identified patients are seeking care for specific procedures and conditions. This ability to track venue selection opens a window into patient migratory patterns and reveals how patients navigate the healthcare system.

When patients leave a place of service, FAIR Health analytics can uncover the venues of care they access thereafter and the services they utilize most often. This type of analysis can help to inform care coordination and strategic business decisions, such as clinical affiliations and network development.

Examples of Patient Migration

For example, FAIR Health data show that most initial diagnoses of upper respiratory infections (URIs) in 2014-2016 took place in a physician’s office (58 percent of total longitudinal claim lines). Nine percent took place in an outpatient setting. Only six percent took place in an inpatient setting.

But the pattern was quite different when those same patients sought care for second diagnoses of URI on another day of service but within 14 days of the first diagnosis. During the 2014-2016 time period, inpatient facilities, at 39 percent of claim lines, were the primary setting for these second diagnoses, indicating an escalation in the diagnoses associated with the patients. Offices accounted for only 35 percent, while outpatient settings rose to 15 percent.

For chronic obstructive bronchitis, FAIR Health data have shown a decline in treatments in both inpatient and emergency room settings over recent years, and an increase in treatments in the home and in outpatient settings.

According to FAIR Health President Robin Gelburd, “With the growth of alternative venues of care, the landscape of treatment has changed significantly. FAIR Health can help shed light on this changing healthcare system by offering actionable insights into patterns of patient migration.”

For more information on FAIR Health custom analytics, contact us by email at info@fairhealth.org or call us at 855-301-3247, Monday through Friday, 9 am to 6 pm ET.