Healthcare hotspotting is the strategic use of data to reallocate resources to a small subset of high-needs, high-cost patients.
A small number of individuals drives much of the cost in the American health care system. The system is designed to work for the average patient, and like many large systems, it struggles to help extreme patients, or outliers – the small number of patients with complex, hard-to-manage needs and chronic conditions. These outliers are known as super-utilizers.Patients who have frequent contact with the medical system without measurable improvements in their health. Over time, their chronic conditions worsen, leading to ever more expensive, invasive and risky treatment. Super-utilizers are the patients our standard systems have failed.
Hotspotting uses data to discover the outliers, understand the problem, dedicate resources, and design effective interventions. It is a movement for a new system of multi-disciplinary, coordinated care that treats the whole patient and attends to the non-medical needs that affect health: housing, mental health, substance abuse, emotional support.
Dr. Brenner is a family physician who has worked in Camden, NJ since 2000, owning and operating a solo-practice, urban family medicine office providing health care to a Medicaid-enrolled population. He founded the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers in 2003. In 2013 he was honored with the MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship for his groundbreaking work in the field of population health, and in 2014 he was elected to the Institute of Medicine.
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