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Research Letter |

The Adequacy of Individual Hospital Data to Identify High Utilizers and Assess Community Health

David Horrocks, MBA, MPH1; Donna Kinzer, BS2; Scott Afzal, BSBA1; Jenner Alpern, MS3; Joshua M. Sharfstein, MD4
[+] Author Affiliations
1Chesapeake Regional Information System for Our Patients, Columbia, Maryland
2Maryland’s Health Services Cost Review Commission, Baltimore
3Audacious Inquiry, Baltimore, Maryland
4Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176(6):856-858. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.1248.
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This study examined the patterns of hospital use of all patients with more than 5 emergency department visits to Maryland hospitals in 2014 to determine whether high utilizers can be identified by data from individual hospitals.

Many hospitals are analyzing data from their own information systems to develop new strategies to improve population health. Such analyses aim to identify high utilizers who may benefit from additional support and to elucidate community patterns of potentially preventable serious illness, but the extent to which individual hospital data are sufficient for these purposes is unclear.

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Concentration of Inpatient Care in Maryland, Shown as the Percentage of Admissions to Most Utilized Hospital by Zip Code
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