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Data. The Foundation of Improvement

During my first 30+ days it has been exciting to hear positive feedback from our various stakeholders regarding CIVHC, its staff and management team, and our future potential. Most see the value of the Colorado All Payer Claims Database (CO APCD) and the strong potential of claims data in informing and driving health care reform. In fact, at the national level we recently received a letter of commendation from Dr. Len Nichols, Director of the Center for Health Care Policy Research and Ethics at George Mason University, highlighting the value of the recent launch of consumer-focused price information and how the CO APCD differentiates health care price transparency in a way unlike any other APCD in the country. We consider ourselves stewards of this important resource for the state and it is our commitment to continue to make this valuable data and information more readily available and actionable.

What I’ve learned so far about CIVHC’s history, successes and challenges, and other healthcare organizations and key initiatives across the state has been invaluable in grounding me in the landscape of health care across Colorado.
Through this discovery process, my initial insights are:

  1. Due in large part to the historic collaborative nature of stakeholder partners and proactive intention to make positive improvement, CIVHC is well positioned to make significant progress in supporting Colorado towards the Triple Aim of lower costs, improved health and improved overall quality of health care.
  2. Colorado is recognized nationally as a leader in health care improvement. The Colorado APCD, our Health Information Exchange organizations, and countless other initiatives have put Colorado on the map and we are poised to continue to advance our new initiatives and systems and receive accolades for innovation.
  3. The CO APCD is the most comprehensive claims database in the country and with that our capabilities to produce increasingly more meaningful data and analytics across payer and provider types will continue to expand to meet the needs of providers, payers and other stakeholders. Detailed claims data has the power to identify numerous opportunities for improvement and we will continually look for better ways to utilize this important resource.
  4. Claims data, while valuable on its own, can be even more powerful when combined with other sources of data. CIVHC will continue to partner with organizations to identify ways to merge and evaluate claims data from the APCD with other data sets such as clinical, patient experience, and socio-economic data. In an effort to move in this direction and identify opportunities, we are hosting a Colorado Health Data Day on September 26th.
  5. CIVHC, along with its partners, must continue to leverage resources and knowledge to identify health care improvement opportunities and drive change through specific health care initiatives.

As I’m beginning to learn more about the various initiatives CIVHC is involved in, it’s become clear to me that the foundation of our work and the work of so many across the state is grounded in strong and evolving data and analytics. The APCD along with future integrated clinical, patient experience, social determinants of health, and economic data can enlighten and support initiatives in support of the Triple Aim including our work to advance payment reform more globally and to improve care delivery through the Healthy Transitions Colorado campaign and advancing palliative care. Transparent data, made available to consumers, is also critical in order for them to make informed decisions about their health care.

The entire CIVHC team is working collectively to develop a robust Strategy and Operating Plan to reaffirm our mission and vision, and develop goals, strategies, tactics and actionable plans. It will also contain our 3-5 year roadmaps and performance measures to ensure accountability.

I am truly excited to be a part of CIVHC and to play a role with the CIVHC team and other stakeholder organizations in helping to effect and drive change towards the Triple Aim for Colorado: better health, better care, and lower costs. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me directly (

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