Much of what we know--or think we know--about clinical effectiveness is derived from large-scale data aggregation and its subsequent analysis. But the traditional data models used for aggregation--taking massive sets of claims data and throwing in some lab data--just isn't cutting it anymore, according to David Stumpf, M.D. "That produces large and powerful data sets, but they're missing critical information," Stumpf said during a presentation at Payer Symposium held at the HIMSS 2010 Conference & Exhibition in Atlanta. "Using just claims data is like trying to figure out how good your meal was by looking at your credit card bill."

Stumpf is one the leaders of DARTNet, a federated network of electronic health records data from multiple provider organizations representing thousands of clinicians and practices and approximately 3.5 million patients. The network compiles data from 14 different EHR systems used by its member organizations. DARTNet ( is seeking new member practices and organizations to expand the network. Stumpf is senior vice president, clinical data strategy, for the enterprise services group at UnitedHealth Group.

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