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Electronic Health Record Data Expanding in Use to Identify Those at Risk of Diseases

Douglas Krakower, MD, explains how electronic health records have expanded in use in order to identify people at risk for diseases who could benefit from preventive interventions.

Douglas Krakower, MD, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, explains how electronic health records have expanded in use in order to identify people at risk for diseases who could benefit from preventive interventions.

Interview Transcript (modified slightly for readability):

“Using electronic health records to identify patients at risk for a disease is something that is relatively new. Electronic health records have expanded in terms of their use in this country. Fifteen years ago, they were increasing in use, but now, it’s essentially ubiquitous—they’re at every institution and almost every provider is entering data.

I think researchers and public health practitioners have started to realize that this is a treasure trove of information [that they can use] to identify people at risk for diseases who could benefit from preventive interventions. I think the idea is not necessarily new, but it has expanded in its use, and the tools for identifying people at risk in terms of predictive analytics have become more sophisticated and more widespread.

This study is a good example of the use of modern machine learning methodologies to try and use these data to find people at risk for HIV acquisition.”