Our providers and staff are no strangers to the Social Determinants of Health. However, our clinic has not implemented an organization-wide screening tool to collect SDoH data. With that said, we’ve been collecting and reporting SDoH data for quite some time. Our front desk staff collects demographic data that we present and discuss during our monthly meetings. We use this data to determine staffing needs and ensure that our team is representative of the community we serve. The front desk staff is also tasked with calling patients who no-show to appointments to determine barriers to access (e.g. transportation). Our pediatric providers are great with performing weight/physical activity/nutrition counseling and referring patients/families to our Social Worker/Care Coordinators for additional counseling and resources. Any patient who scores positively on a depression screener (administered during triage) is flagged for our Licensed Clinical Social Worker, who through a warm hand-off administers additional screeners and schedules the patient to be seen by an in-house Mental Health provider. Finally, we have daily Social Services hours that are available to all members of our community.

To be quite honest, I am still struggling with the costs vs. benefits of being one of the first health centers in the State to take on such a project. For those who were in a similar boat, but have since implemented the PRAPARE tool (or something similar), what argument finally convinced you and your team to move forward with the tool? Was it a grant for SDoH funding that came along? Or does the data from the tool truly provide unique insight into the needs of your patient population? Thanks in advance!

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