Measuring Positive Health Outcomes: A Panel Discussion

VIDEO: The presentations and panel discussion on measuring positive health outcomes

Using evidence from rigorous research, the integrative health field is working to shift the way medical professionals, policy leaders, and patients view health and wellness. To facilitate this shift, the field would benefit from a broader range of metrics for demonstrating the impact of integrative practices on individual and community health.

The Institute hosted an expert panel at its August meeting of Scholars and Fellows to discuss the challenges and developments in measuring integrative health outcomes. Panelists were:

Carley Riley, MD, MPP, MHS

Assistant professor, Department of Pediatrics Division of Critical Care Medicine, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Cente

Member of the 100 Million Healthier Lives Metrics Hub

Dr. Riley brought a community-level perspective to the discussion. While outlining the key components of collective well-being—social, cognitive, financial, emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical health—she explored various approaches health organizations are taking to measure integrative health outcomes. 

Delia Chiaramonte, MD 

Associate Director and Director of Education, Center for integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland

Assistant Professor for Family & Community Medicine, University of Maryland Medical School

Dr. Chiaramonte discussed integrative health approaches that are being used in a hospital setting to treat patients who are suffering from traumatic conditions. She addressed the importance of identifying metrics that will matter to hospital administrators—such as clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction, medical team wellness, and financial metrics—in order to foster further engagement across hospital departments.

Kirstin Aschbacher, PhD 

Fellow, Institute for Integrative Health

Data Scientist, Behavioral Health Psychologist at Jawbone

Assistant Professor in Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco

Bringing a health technology perspective to the panel, Dr. Aschbacher discussed the challenges consumer health tech companies encounter when producing and communicating metrics to their audiences. To inspire positive, healthy behaviors, companies must analyze massive volumes of data submitted through electronic devices and then clearly convey to customers what those metrics. 

Identifying new metrics for health outcomes can help the integrative health field overcome some of the obstacles panelists shared. Meaningful metrics will enable researchers to uncover persuassive evidence that can be used to secure funding for expanded services. Use of these services will influence positive health outcomes and help to drive cultural and policy changes.

Watch the presentations and panel discussion on YouTube.

Topics: Measurement