Trenton Health Team (THT) was selected by Data Across Sectors for Health (DASH), a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to participate in a new initiative called CIC-START (Community Impact Contracts – Strategic, Timely, Actionable, Replicable, Targeted), and to receive a grant for $24,915. DASH CIC-START aims to accelerate progress towards developing precise, data-driven public health initiatives, and THT will use the funds and support to help drive implementation of the NowPow referral system in Trenton
THT operates the Trenton Health Information Exchange (HIE), providing healthcare practitioners access to an integrated patient record in real time to support treatment decisions and strategies. In January 2019, THT launched NowPow, a social services technology platform that connects people to community resources to address their chronic and social conditions by making tracked referrals. Recognizing that social dimensions are critical to the health of its clientele, THT will combine clinical data in the HIE with social determinant data from NowPow to improve health outcomes in Trenton. Using the system, clinical staff, including social workers and case managers, will screen patients for social determinants of health and generate a curated list of resources based on the patients’ geography and needs.
In addition to bringing healthcare staff in Trenton onto this new system, THT is engaging more than one hundred community organizations such as food pantries, housing agencies, and behavioral health providers to build a comprehensive, Trenton-focused resource directory on the NowPow platform.
“Integrating existing HIE data with social determinant data through NowPow is the next step in providing consistent, high-quality care to all Trenton residents,” said Gregory Paulson, Executive Director of Trenton Health Team. “With support from DASH, we anticipate that our implementation timeline will be accelerated beyond our original projections.”
In addition to funding for technical assistance, Trenton Health Team and the other awardees will also receive support to participate in All In: Data for Community Health—a learning collaborative of 100+ communities across the country working to merge data from multiple sectors to better understand and address health challenges.
“Everyone deserves the opportunity to lead a healthy life, but to achieve this vision we need to shift our approach by moving beyond the health care sector and analyzing data on social, economic, and environmental factors that influence health,” says DASH Co-Director Clare Tanner at the Michigan Public Health Institute. “We hope that DASH CIC-START helps local collaborations take significant steps toward aligning multi-sector partners around data-driven approaches that promote health equity.”