Select LHS Program projects

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KPWHRI researchers team up with partners from care delivery to present their collaborative work at the December 2018 LHS Program All Hands Luncheon.

Research-care delivery partnerships in action

To date, more than 50 LHS Program projects have been completed or are underway. Some are short-term collaborations that help our care delivery partners use scientific capabilities to quickly answer emerging questions about quality, affordability, and member experience. Other projects involve long-term, high-impact partnerships that span intervention development, implementation, and evaluation. Here are a few examples:

Developing, testing, and spreading a whole-person approach to managing chronic pain

The LHS Program is leading an Integrated Pain Management Program Pilot that aims to provide safe alternatives to opioids and increase the use of evidence-based, patient-centered non-pharmacologic approaches to chronic pain. Specific program objectives include:

  • Designing a scalable primary care-based pain management approach to improve care for people with chronic pain
  • Implementing and evaluating the approach in a pilot at a single medical center
  • Using findings to spread successful components of the program across Kaiser Permanente Washington

Creating value for our members through advanced analytics

Predictive analytics can improve clinical and operational decision making by identifying meaningful patterns in complex electronic health record (EHR) and claims data. The LHS Program brings scientists together with care delivery partners to design and implement predictive models to improve outcomes such as flu vaccination among high-risk members.

During the 2018/19 flu season, and LHS Program team piloted a predictive risk model to identify members who were at high risk for influenza-related complications, followed by outreach to encourage vaccination for these members. This brief, low-cost, targeted intervention was associated with increased vaccine uptake among high-risk patients. Based on these findings, Kaiser Permanente Washington has adopted this intervention systemwide. (See story by KING 5 NewsDec. 2, 2019.)

Through the LHS Program, other predictive models are being developed to:

  • Prevent hospitalizations
  • Avoid missed appointments
  • Promote advanced care planning
  • Provide services to members at high risk for suicide attempt

In other advanced analytics work, a team of researchers, data experts, and clinical leaders is using variation analysis to improve quality and affordability by reducing variation and utilization of low-value care. This work is focused on the highest cost, highest burden health conditions across our region.

Improving access and service by optimizing the Community Resource Specialist (CRS) role

Implementation scientists at KPWHRI are working with behavioral health experts at Kaiser Permanente Washington to define the core components of the new CRS role, support its implementation through practice facilitation and technical assistance, and document best practices and scale-up strategies. (The CRS is a primary care team member who connects patients with community-based resources to help them carry out the care plan be active in their own care.)

An LHS Program team is also leading a comprehensive evaluation of the impact of the CRS on patient and care team outcomes. The goal of the evaluation is to use lessons learned to enhance program effectiveness at scale and to inform ongoing decision-making about the CRS program. The quantitative evaluation is underway, with more than 1,100 baseline surveys completed with members. As of November, the qualitative evaluation team had also completed four site visits and began conducting interviews with CRSs. Patient interviews are scheduled to start in early 2020.

Supporting innovative, patient-centered design in new clinics by synthesizing research evidence and best practices

In collaboration with a variety of stakeholders from across Kaiser Permanente, LHS researchers are reviewing the latest scientific evidence and developing rapid assessment approaches to clarify clinic goals.

LHS Program in the media

New program ensures high-risk patients get flu shots in the South Sound

KING 5 News, Dec. 2, 2019

How to assess readiness and impact


AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting 2019

Claire Allen, an implemenation expert and LHS core team member, shares her poster describing the 27 core constructs that an LHS program can use to assess readiness and measure the program’s progress and impact. View poster.

Contact us

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