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Digitization is considered to radically transform healthcare. As such, with seemingly unlimited opportunities to collect data, it will play an important role in the public health policy-making process. In this context, health data cooperatives (HDC) are a key component and core element for public health policy-making and for exploiting the potential of all the existing and rapidly emerging data sources. Being able to leverage all the data requires overcoming the computational, algorithmic, and technological...
At the intersection of new technology advancements, ever-changing health policy, and fiscal constraints, public health agencies seek to leverage modern technical innovations and benefit from a more comprehensive and cooperative approach to transforming public health, health care, and other data into action. State health agencies recognized a way to advance population health was to integrate public health with clinical health data through electronic infectious disease case reporting. The Public Health Commun...
Data from traditional public health surveillance systems can have some limitations, e.g., timeliness, geographic level, and amount of data accessible. Electronic health records (EHRs) could present an opportunity to supplement current sources of routinely collected surveillance data. The National Environmental Public Health Tracking Program (Tracking Program) sought to explore the use of EHRs for advancing environmental public health surveillance practices. The Tracking Program funded four state/local healt...
If people can read, understand and act on health information to better their health and reduce illness, they are thought to have "adequate" health literacy. Poor health literacy can mean people are less able to access health care and manage their health. Health literacy tends to worsen as adults get older, and is especially poor in adults age 65 and over. Ideally, health literacy interventions target people before age 65, to establish good skills and habits before people have many health problems associated...
The majority of studies included in recent reviews of impact for public and patient involvement (PPI) in health research had a qualitative design. PPI in solely quantitative designs is underexplored, particularly its impact on statistical analysis. Statisticians in practice have a long history of working in both consultative (indirect) and collaborative (direct) roles in health research, yet their perspective on PPI in quantitative health research has never been explicitly examined.
Modern public health emphasizes population-focused services, which may require collaborative work both across and within organizations. Studies have explored interorganizational collaborations, but there are little data regarding collaborations within public health organizations.
In January 2017, the UK Government made public a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Department of Health, National Health Service (NHS) Digital and the Home Office. This Memorandum allows for the more expedited sharing of a patient's non-clinical data, specifically from the NHS England to the Home Office. The Government justified the MoU as in the 'public interest to support effective immigration enforcement'. In this review, we seek to unpack this justification by providing, first, a background ...
Re: Letter to the Editor of public health in response to 'Human Papillomavirus vaccine initiation in Asian Indians and Asian Subpopulations: A case for examining disaggregated data in public health research'.
This study examined Twitter for public health surveillance during a mass gathering in Canada with two objectives: to explore the feasibility of acquiring, categorizing and using geolocated Twitter data and to compare Twitter data against other data sources used for Pan Parapan American Games (P/PAG) surveillance.
The digital world is generating data at a staggering and still increasing rate. While these "big data" have unlocked novel opportunities to understand public health, they hold still greater potential for research and practice. This review explores several key issues that have arisen around big data. First, we propose a taxonomy of sources of big data to clarify terminology and identify threads common across some subtypes of big data. Next, we consider common public health research and practice uses for big ...
Ensuring the conditions for all people to be healthy, though always the core mission of public health, has evolved in approaches in response to the changing epidemiology and challenges. In the Public Health 3.0 era, multisectorial efforts are essential in addressing not only infectious or noncommunicable diseases but also upstream social determinants of health. In this article, we argue that actionable, geographically granular, and timely intelligence is an essential infrastructure for the protection of our...
Responding to online patient feedback is considered integral to patient safety and quality improvement. However, guidance on how to respond effectively is limited, with limited attention paid to patient perceptions and reactions.
Social media (SM) offer huge potential for public health research, serving as a vehicle for surveillance, delivery of health interventions, recruitment to trials, collection of data, and dissemination. However, the networked nature of the data means they are riddled with ethical challenges, and no clear consensus has emerged as to the ethical handling of such data. This article outlines the key ethical concerns for public health researchers using SM and discusses how these concerns might best be addressed. ...
Reciprocal relationships between researchers and patient and public involvement (PPI) contributors can enable successful PPI in research. However, research and anecdotal evidence suggest that researchers do not commonly provide feedback to PPI contributors thus preventing them from knowing whether, how or where their contributions were useful to researchers and research overall.
The US public and private sectors now spend more than $3 trillion on health each year. While critical studies have examined the relationship between public spending on health and health outcomes, relatively little is known about the impact of broader public-sector spending on health. Using county-level public finance data for the period 1972-2012, we estimated the impact of local public hospital spending and nonhospital health spending on all-cause mortality in the county. Overall, a 10 percent increase i...
Currently, abundances of highly relevant health data are locked up in data silos due to decentralized storage and data protection laws. The health data cooperative (HDC) model is established to make this valuable data available for societal purposes. The aim of this study is to analyse the HDC model and its potentials and challenges.
To systematically review the literature and compare response rates (RRs) of web surveys to alternative data collection methods in the context of epidemiologic and public health studies.
Ensuring adequate and appropriate training of the workforce is a crucial priority for governmental public health. This is particularly important, given the diverse backgrounds of the public health workforce; the vast majority (approximately 83%) do not have formal training in public health, and those that do have formal training in public health have limited training in management and other essential organizational skills.
This letter provides an overview of the application of big data in health care system to improve quality of care, including predictive modelling for risk and resource use, precision medicine and clinical decision support, quality of care and performance measurement, public health and research applications, among others. The author delineates the tremendous potential for big data analytics and discuss how it can be successfully implemented in clinical practice, as an important component of a learning health-...
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) case surveillance and other health care databases are increasingly being used for public health action, which has the potential to optimize the health outcomes of people living with HIV (PLWH). However, often PLWH cannot be located based on the contact information available in these data sources. We assessed the accuracy of contact information for PLWH in HIV case surveillance and additional data sources and whether time since diagnosis was associated with accurate contact...
Many public health practitioners and organizations view themselves as engaged in the promotion or achievement of equity. However, discussions around public health frequently assume that practitioners and policy-makers take a utilitarian approach to this work.
Three data sources are generally used in monitoring health on the population level. Health interview surveys (HISs) are based on participants' self-report. Health examination surveys (HESs) yield more objective data, and also persons who are unaware of their elevated risks can be detected. Medical records (MRs) and other administrative registers also provide objective data, but their availability, coverage and quality vary between countries. We summarized studies comparing self-reported data with (i) measur...
Using official data from Brazil's Internal Revenue Service, this article estimates health-related federal tax expenditures between 2003 and 2015. The Ministry of Health will thus be able to assess the relevance of these subsidies within a context of gross underfunding of Brazil's public health system. The analysis was built around concepts and theories developed in the fields of political economy and public finance, focusing on policies directed at public funding of the health sector. The results show that ...
This article aims to describe the public health career experiences of international graduates of a Master of Science in Public Health (MSc PH) programme and to contribute to developing the evidence base on international public health workforce capacity development.