FEB 26, 2014

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First Steps for Population Health

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Asthma afflicts one in 10 U.S. children and costs $3.2 billion annually to treat-often in the form of emergency visits and inpatient stays. One pediatrician at a children's hospital has taken to prescribing HEPA vacuum cleaners for her asthma patients, to keep their homes' air freer of the tiny particles that can trigger attacks. Though it's not "health care" in the medication/procedure/therapy sense, that prescription has cut the kids' ED visits by half and their inpatient stays by 60 percent.

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Unlike some other major industries, health care incorporates geospatial data only sparingly. But that could change quickly with population health a priority.

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