An Emerging Field

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DASH monitors the field of multi-sector data sharing in order to: 1) inform grant-making, 2) support communities, and 3) develop an evidence base for policy and practice. Together with other national program offices with similar aims in a collaboration called All In: Data for Community Health, DASH fields a survey to learn more about how collaborations across the country organize their communities and develop sustainable data infrastructure to promote equitable, thriving communities. This report, based on data submitted through September 2019, captures the landscape of 179 multi-sector collaborations sharing or planning to share data.

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Community engagement and sharing leadership is important to successful, equitable governance, but most respondents did not report having robust participation at this level. Further, 40% mention insufficient staff resources, and only 5% have a sustainable funding model in place. While the promise of increased efficiency, deeper insights, and better care continue to accelerate efforts to share data across sectors, commonplace barriers to successful implementation of shared data systems remain without clearly articulated systematic, translatable and scalable solutions.

The story doesn’t end here. The findings of this report showcase many resilient communities continue to tackle barriers and leverage shared data toward equitable improvements to health and wellbeing.

We found that:

  1. Healthcare, public health and social services are the most common participants in multi-sector data sharing; among the latter, projects focused on housing and food predominate
  2. Most collaborations have the fundamentals for data sharing in place: an existing community collaboration, shared vision, and leadership committed to the project.
  3. Well over half of the collaborations report that multi-sector data are needed for planning, evaluation, community health assessments, mapping, and community dashboards. About half of the collaborations report sharing data for care coordination use cases, especially screening and referral for services.

Be a Part of the Conversation

If you found this report interesting, stay in touch with us by signing up for the All In Newsletter and All In Online Community.

DASH and its partners in communities and in the field learn more each day and will be launching its next scan of the field in May 2021. We hope you will be part of our next scan! We do plan to do things a little differently. Specifically, we want to hear from all types of entities within healthcare, public health, and community-based social services – whether you are actively participating in multisector data sharing or not. Furthermore, we will be leaning into learning more about data sharing, health equity practice, and authentic community engagement.

DASH’s early scan of the field remains relevant and can be accessed here.

Download the 2015 Environmental Scan