As much as 80% of our community’s health is determined by social factors like food security, affordable housing, access to reliable transportation, and much more.
At HandsOn Central Ohio, we believe that we can foster a healthier, more equitable community when different sectors—social service, medical, government—work together by sharing information about the communities they both serve. But, until recently, those different sectors were unable to share information to address the need with a targeted, data-driven approach.
In other words, health systems have data on patients, social service organizations have data on clients, and there’s a significant amount of overlap between those two pools of people. So how can we close the “data gap” between the social service and medical service to improve the overall health of Columbus?
That’s precisely what 2-1-1s across the country are working hard to accomplish.
We’re gathering information from a range of cities that have already implemented Community Information Exchanges and applying those lessons here in Columbus to improve community health. Sharing data is a big deal. It could create system-level impact on the issues that hit particularly close to home in Columbus, such as chronic disease, mental and behavioral health, access to overall healthcare, and maternal and infant health.
Chronic diseases such as stroke, diabetes, and heart disease “are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems in Ohio.”
Chronic diseases such as stroke, diabetes, and heart disease “are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems in Ohio.” Research from the Ohio Department of Health clearly illustrates that these diseases cost Ohio billions of dollars each year. Moreover, we know how to prevent them: cease tobacco use, increase physical activity, and improve daily nutrition. Sharing data can help us battle chronic disease in Columbus so that our families and neighbors can live longer, healthier lives.
When we work together, complex problems become a little less daunting and a lot more solvable. If you want to learn more about how we are using Data for Social Good, reach out to HandsOn. We’d love to hear from you.