Payers use data to flag those at greatest risk of opioid abuse

While most headline-grabbing solutions to ease the opioid crisis focus on reducing prescriptions and getting people help after they become addicted, a growing movement seeks to catch people before they fall into opioid addiction.

Providers, payers and community groups are coming together using principles of population health — namely social determinants of health(SDOH) data — to find at-risk people. The stakeholders share data on factors like poverty rates and transportation availability to spot potential problems before they spiral out of control. And there is some evidence the programs work and save money.

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