Patient context - the "envirome" - can have a significant impact on patient health. While envirome indicators are available through large scale public data sources, they are not provided in a format that can be easily accessed and interpreted at the point of care by healthcare providers with limited time during a patient encounter. We developed a clinical decision support tool to bring envirome indicators to the point of care in a large pediatric hospital system in the Kansas City region. The Envirome Web Service (EWS) securely geocodes patient addresses in real time to link their records with publicly available context data. End-users guided the design of the EWS, which presents summaries of patient context data in the electronic health record (EHR) without disrupting the provider workflow. Through surveys, focus groups, and a formal review by hospital staff, the EWS was deployed into production use, integrating publicly available data on food access with the hospital EHR. Evaluation of EWS usage during the 2020 calendar year shows that 1,034 providers viewed the EWS, with a total of 29,165 sessions. This suggests that the EWS was successfully integrated with the EHR and is highly visible. The results also indicate that 63 (6.1%) of the providers are regular users that opt to maintain the EWS in their custom workflows, logging more than 100 EWS sessions during the year. The vendor agnostic design of the EWS supports interoperability and makes it accessible to health systems with disparate EHR vendors.
Journal of biomedical informatics
Electronic Health Record; Envirome; Exposome; Health disparity; Social determinants; Web service
Kane NJ, Wang X, Gerkovich MM, et al. The Envirome Web Service: Patient context at the point of care. J Biomed Inform. 2021;119:103817. doi:10.1016/j.jbi.2021.103817