New Coronavirus Data Set Determines Risk and Resources
Apr 06, 2020 | 4 Min Read
Author: Vincent Morello
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and other such agencies continue to assess where the next COVID-19 outbreaks will occur. Carrot Health, a data and analytic services company for the healthcare industry, is determining the risk to those communities and if they will have access to sufficient medical care when an outbreak does emerge.
Carrot Health, a Snowflake customer, has made available for free its COVID-19 Critical Risk Index. It comprises more than 100 data sources that provide anonymized health, lifestyle, and other data about the more than 260 million adults living in the U.S. While healthcare and health insurance companies are Carrot Health’s normal customers, its new COVID-19 data set has attracted the interest of federal and state agencies that are now using the data.
“Should an outbreak happen in our community, what is the risk to the overall population? And based on those assumptions, is that going to overwhelm our resources,” Carrot Health CEO, Kurt Waltenbaugh said. “We focus on the number of people who are likely to become critical cases should they be infected. So, it’s very easy to see how that quickly overwhelms the number of ICU beds in a given geography, and ventilators and other necessary equipment.”
Carrot Health identifies the types of individuals who are most likely to become critical, if infected. The next step is to overlay that data with people in that area who are more likely to experience limited access to affordable healthcare, stable housing, healthy food, and social interaction. They are also more mobile, which means they are more likely to contract the virus and their mobility makes it more difficult to get them the resources they need. Armed with this information, government agencies can determine in advance what additional resources in specific communities will be needed to treat people and to contain the virus.
In addition to the 100-plus data sources in Carrot Health’s data set, the company also surveys millions of Americans on a periodic basis to ask questions about their health and behavior. Consumers of the data set have the option of instantly viewing the more than 300 dashboards available or can integrate the data set directly with their own data.
Carrot Health uses Snowflake Cloud Data Platform as its data warehouse to load, store, and analyze its data. The company uses Snowflake to connect all of its disparate data sets the company wants to analyze. Carrot Health also uses Snowflake to create a secure and HIPAA-compliant environment to protect its data.
Mr Waltenbaugh acknowledges the immediate benefits of Carrot Health’s COVID-19 Critical Risk Index but said long-term insights that emerge will present additional opportunities. “People will begin to acknowledge and understand the different levels of impact the virus has on different subsets of our communities,” he said. “So, understanding the real barriers to health each individual is facing in their own lives will allow us to change the debate around how we deal with things like homelessness so that we can better prevent these pandemics from happening in future.”
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