Through Northeastern’s doctoral program in population health, Cassidy Griffin (PhD ’20) is gaining research experience in an emerging field of health as well as an industry view of how population health and data analytics are being used to help organizations improve efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery.
Population health has been defined as “the health outcome of a group of individuals, including the distribution of such outcomes within the group.” The concept represents a shift within the health fields away from reactionary and very expensive medical care to disease prevention, wellness, and effective management of chronic illness.
Here’s where Griffin comes in. As part of a new Northeastern-MEDITECH partnership, Griffin attends doctoral-level classes and also spends three days a week at MEDITECH, a Massachusetts-based health information company. At MEDITECH, Griffin applies her discovery-based skills and knowledge obtained through the population health program to help MEDITECH better assess the care management strategies and needs of healthcare organizations. These assessments are critical to MEDITECH’s ability to develop innovative electronic medical records software to help healthcare providers—including hospitals, physician organizations, and urgent care centers—report health metrics, identify patients who are at high risk for chronic conditions or hospital re-admission, and track groups of patients in need of healthcare or guidance.