AAFP, HL7 look to bolster use of SDOH data via FHIR

The American Academy of Family Physicians and Health Level Seven International are teaming on a new project to improve the interoperability of social determinants of health data.

The Gravity Project, part of HL7’s program to accelerate the adoption of its Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR), is meant to standardize medical codes to support the use of SDOH-related data in patient care, care coordination, population health management, value-based payment as well as clinical research.

“Progress in patient care and research has made significant strides with the emergence of the HL7 FHIR Accelerator Program,” said HL7 CEO Chuck Jaffe, MD, in a written statement. “By incorporating the social determinants of health care into our decision process, the Gravity Project will help to transform care delivery and health analytics.”

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Also See: Payers, providers jointly benefit from SDOH efforts

The Gravity Project, which is initially focused on food security, housing stability and quality, and transportation access, has established the following goals:

  • Develop use cases to support documentation for screening, diagnosis, treatment/intervention and planning activities within EHR and related systems.
  • Identify common data elements and their associated value sets to support the uses cases.
  • Develop a consensus-based set of recommendations on how best to capture and group these data elements for interoperable electronic exchange and aggregation.
  • Initiate development of an HL7 FHIR Implementation Guide based on the defined use cases and associated data sets that will be finalized in the next phase of work.

“The AAFP is pleased to act as convener for the Gravity Project and support information interoperability efforts,” said Shawn Martin, AAFP’s senior vice president of advocacy, practice advancement and policy. “Our vision is to transform healthcare by addressing the social determinants of health through efforts such as our innovative HealthLandscape geoanalytics platform and The EveryONE Project to help family physicians take action and confront health disparities head-on. The important work of the Gravity Project will advance data exchange and allow family physicians to better care for patients and communities.”

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