Recommended Social and Behavioral Domains and Measures for Electronic Health Records

Type: Consensus Study
Topics: Health Services, Coverage, and Access, Public Health, Quality and Patient Safety
Board: Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice

Activity Description

The Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Recommended Social and Behavioral Domains and Measures for Electronic Health Records will identify domains and measures that capture the social determinants of health to inform the development of recommendations for Stage 3 meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). The committee's work will be conducted in two phases and produce two products. As part of its work, the committee will:

Phase 1

  • Identify specific domains to be considered by the Office of the National Coordinator.
  • Specify criteria that should be used in deciding which domains should be included,
  • Identify core social and behavioral domains to be included in all EHRs, and
  • Identify any domains that should be included for specific populations or settings defined by age, socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity, disease or other characteristics.

A brief Phase 1 report will be produced and submitted to the committee's sponsors.

Phase 2

The committee will consider the following questions:

  1. What specific measures under each domain specified in Phase 1 should be included in EHRs? The committee will examine both data elements and mechanisms for data collection.
  2. What are the obstacles to adding these measures to the EHR and how can these obstacles be overcome?
  3. What are the possibilities for linking EHRs to public health departments, social service agencies, or other relevant non-healthcare organizations? Case studies will be considered of where this has been done and how issues of privacy have been addressed.

A final report that includes the Phase 1 report and addresses the Phase 2 questions will be the final product.

The committee will make recommendations where appropriate.

Submitting  Comments:

The committee invites written comments on its task. In particular, the committee would find it very helpful to hear specific stories and concrete examples that could inform either the general issue of collection of social and behavioral data in EHRs or regarding specific domains or measures to help it prioritize which domains have the greatest potential for positive impact on clinical care and population health if included in EHRs. We welcome comments entered through our web portal. Please send your comments to using the “Feedback” button at the bottom of the page. Your entire email, including your name, email address, and any other identifying information will be included in the Public Access File as the National Academy of Sciences complies with Section 15 of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA).

For more information

Previous Meetings for this Activity

View All Previous Meetings