Reducing Health Disparities: A Health IT Solution

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1R43MD005810-01
Agency Tracking Number: MD005810
Amount: $399,571.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: NIMHD
Solicitation Number: PHS2010-2
Small Business Information
DUNS: 927772657
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (608) 261-6939
Business Contact
Phone: (608) 261-6939
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Reducing Health Disparities: A Health IT Solution, proposes a collaborative effort to coordinate community stakeholders in Dane County, WI, to integrate a replicable and innovative health IT solution to overcome systemic barriers that exacerbate health disparities and quality of health care for racial and ethnic minorities. Dane county experienced a dramatic decrease in African American infant mortality from the late 90's to 2006. While project partners research and evaluate the causes for the precipitous drop, we propose to built upon a foundation of over a decade of successful health benefits counseling coalition building; care coordination; and benefits training for service providers and create the next generation strategy. My Coverage Plan, Inc. and partners ABC for Health Inc. (ABC), development vendor Yahara Software LLC, outpost partners St Mary's Hospital, and select advisors representing the Dane County HealthWatch Coalition, Healthy Beginnings, and The Medical Education Research Committee Infant Mortality Collaborative propose a SBIR project to develop an accessible, webbased, word-intuitive electronic health benefits screening tool called My Coverage Plan (MCP). MCP targets the reduction in primarily three avoidable health disparities: 1) the increased rate of un-insurance (economic); 2) the reduced access to care and coverage for underserved African American or Latino populations (cultural); and 3) the lack of patient-communicated information to providers (knowledge). The specific aims for the project include: 1) Design a dynamic, goal seeking decision support model (DSM); 2) Test a DSM into a prototype software application using if/then variable selection to enable health care providers to generate a patient-specific electronic document of healthcare coverage options; 3) Design a software application with a proper operating system configuration and design to ensure security of the system; meet enduser expectations; integrate HIPPA requirements; and comply with HL7 and HITSP interoperability guidelines for Electronic Medical Records systems integration; and 4) Design a prototype appropriate for a provider end user environment, yet replicable in broader applications. Future development phases will: test work flow integration at St. Mary's Hospital, with an available clientele of over 700 low-income individuals a year, of which 30% are Spanishspeaking, 25% are African American, and 25% have a special health care need, to demonstrate a reduced overall number of uninsured. The PI Atty. Robert Peterson is the founder of ABC for Health Inc, Inventor of the MCP process and will be the CEO of MCP Inc. (PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE STATEMENT): Reducing Health Disparities: A Health IT Solution proposes a community collaboration to reduce avoidable health disparities and the attendant financial impacts on patients' and health care service providers. My Coverage Plan (MCP) is a web-based, word-intuitive health benefits screening innovation that will generate an electronic coverage record and identify current and future public and private healthcare coverage options. The proper coordination and maximization of public and private sources of health care is a proven strategy to reduce avoidable health disparities and improve population health associated with increased access to healthcare while providing economic stimulus to local and state economies as patients' secure available coverage and avoid medical-debt and uncompensated care.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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