Aligning for Health was pleased to provide comment on the Request for Information regarding Accelerating the Adoption of Standards Related to Social Risk Data within the recently proposed rule to reduce provider and patient burden by improving prior authorization processes and promoting patients’ electronic access to health information.

Documenting social risk and social needs data in health records and promoting greater exchange of such data will ensure payers and providers delivering care to an individual have a more comprehensive view of the factors affecting the individuals’ health. Moreover, social risk and social needs data can be leveraged to provide insights on best practices and drivers of health disparities, and for risk adjusting payment or quality measurement. This documentation is the foundational first step toward care models that drive better alignment between health and social needs to improve patient outcomes. We believe that the outcome-focused care delivery systems of the future must rest on a data foundation that provides health organizations with meaningful information about both health and social risks.

Therefore, we agree that it is important to encourage and incentivize greater identification, documentation, and exchange of social risk and social needs data by removing barriers and by providing education and incentives for providers and payers.

Read the full comment letter here.