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Evaluation of the predictive value of routinely collected health-related social needs measures

Savitz ST, Inselman S, Nyman MA, Lee M
Popul Health Manag

The objective was to assess the value of routinely collected patient-reported health-related social needs (HRSNs) measures for predicting utilization and health outcomes. The authors identified Mayo Clinic patients with cancer, diabetes, or heart failure. The HRSN measures were collected as part of patient-reported screenings from June to December 2019 and outcomes (hospitalization, 30-day readmission, and death) were ascertained in 2020. For each outcome and disease combination, 4 models were used: gradient boosting machine (GBM), random forest (RF), generalized linear model (GLM), and elastic net (EN). Other predictors included clinical factors, demographics, and area-based HRSN measures-area deprivation index (ADI) and rurality. Predictive performance for models was evaluated with and without the routinely collected HRSN measures as change in area under the curve (AUC). Variable importance was also assessed. The differences in AUC were mixed. Significant improvements existed in 3 models of death for cancer (GBM: 0.0421, RF: 0.0496, EN: 0.0428), 3 models of hospitalization (GBM: 0.0372, RF: 0.0640, EN: 0.0441), and 1 of death (RF: 0.0754) for diabetes, and 1 model of readmissions (GBM: 0.1817), and 3 models of death (GBM: 0.0333, RF: 0.0519, GLM: 0.0489) for heart failure. Age, ADI, and the Charlson comorbidity index were the top 3 in variable importance and were consistently more important than routinely collected HRSN measures. The addition of routinely collected HRSN measures resulted in mixed improvement in the predictive performance of the models. These findings suggest that existing factors and the ADI are more important for prediction in these contexts. More work is needed to identify predictors that consistently improve model performance.

Savitz ST, Inselman S, Nyman MA, Lee M. Evaluation of the predictive value of routinely collected health-related social needs measures. Popul Health Manag. 2024;27(1):34-43. DOI:10.1089/pop.2023.0129. PMID: 37903241

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Publication year
Resource type
Peer Reviewed Research
Health & Health Behaviors
Complex Patients
Screening research
Social Determinant of Health
Economic Security
Social Support/Social Isolation
Study design
Other Study Design