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HRPA Webinar Explores Ways Employers Can Use Data to Improve Health Equity

HR Policy and its Council on Inclusion and Diversity hosted a webinar on how employers can use claims, and other health care data, to tailor approaches to improve health equity among their employee population and reinforce the company’s talent management strategy.

Health Care Panelists

Understand your employees: Scott Peterson kicked off the webinar stating that the insights taken from data can only be effective in a culture that knows and cares about its employees. Effective programs require approaches from a granular level so employers should pay attention to the unique needs of different demographics by location.

Data informs solutions: Attendees heard from Craig Kurtzweil and Dr. Rhonda Randall from UnitedHealthcare on the large data sets available to employers. Drilling down on this data by geographic area provides a wealth of information regarding the intersection between social determinants of health (i.e., non-medical factors that impact health outcomes) and the health care behaviors of specific populations. For example, Black and Hispanic members have a higher risk of financial insecurity across all markets, which impacts the utilization of preventive and urgent health care services. Implementing programs which expand access through telehealth or mobile care centers are just two examples of how employers can make it easier for employees to access care.

Engagement with employees: Monika Cox outlined the need to use not only claims data, but also qualitative data from employees through listening sessions, surveys, and ERGs to inform benefit offerings. Holistic, tailored, benefits help reach the goal of being a best place to work for all employees, Ms. Cox said.

Data alone can’t improve outcomes: Joy Fitzgerald closed the call reiterating the fact that while data can identify where discrepancies in health access and outcomes occur, it can’t tell us how to correct them. Ms. Fitzgerald called on attendees to take a holistic approach to employee health that recognizes the impacts of talent mobility and development on health outcomes and access to care.

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Authors: Margaret Faso

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