Recently, Socially Determined hosted a webinar with Pharmaceutical Executive on Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) Data Evolution: Improve Access, Adherence And Achieve More Equitable Outcomes. Trenor Williams, MD, Socially Determined CEO and Co-founder, and Mikki Nasch, Former Co-Founder, Evidation Health and Advisor to Socially Determined, discussed today's SDOH landscape and how life science companies can better understand risk exposure for the communities and patients they serve. 

Today, despite $4.3 trillion in healthcare spending, organizations have a limited view into SDOH factors influencing utilization, costs and patient outcomes. By providing full visibility into these factors, life science companies can better understand how SDOH impacts their populations, with the goal of improving outcomes and advancing equity at scale.

However, access to this data can be difficult and expensive. During the webinar, Trenor and Mikki discussed three key reasons why traditional data collection methods can systematically miss the most vulnerable communities, cohorts and patients: 

  • Data collection is difficult and expensive: Person-level social risk data are gathered inconsistently, (i.e., surveys), diagnostic codes such as ICD-10 Z codes are underutilized, and there are high overhead costs for raw data elements.
  • Data connectivity is limited: It is difficult to connect person- and community-level SDOH data and ensure privacy is maintained.
  • Data lacks specificity: Many publicly available SDOH measurement tools lack precision and accountability and generally do not provide visibility into the source data or analysis methodology.

Mikki also discussed the various ways that SDOH data can be leveraged by multiple stakeholders (Enterprise Data & Analytics, Market Access, RWE and Brand Management) to precision target populations. For example, SDOH can affect breast cancer screening rates, stage at diagnosis, treatment adherence, and survivorship. Understanding community or individual level characteristics inform decisions regarding targeted intervention deployment such as personalized oncology care team outreach or social worker navigation to better support access. 

By utilizing SDOH tools and data driven approaches, life sciences companies can better understand the unique needs of individual patients or communities and make more informed decisions based on those insights. To learn more, you can listen to the webinar recording here or visit 

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