By Berly Laycox

On June 22, 2018, Aaron Truchil, Director of Strategy & Analytics at the Camden Coalition, presented the keynote address at the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab’s (J-PAL) annual Health Care Delivery Innovation Competition. In his address, Aaron spoke about the Camden Coalition’s experiences in implementing a randomized controlled trial (RCT).

Each year, J-PAL North America hosts healthcare leaders and researchers from across the country who participated in their competition to discuss testing innovative care delivery models with RCTs. According to its website, the annual competition “supports the design and implementation of randomized evaluations of promising health and social service programs to improve health outcomes and enhance the accessibility and affordability of quality health care.”

In 2014, the J-PAL North America office selected the Camden Coalition’s study, “Health Care Hotspotting in the United States”, as its first RCT. Since then, J-PAL has helped launch a wide array of interesting and important studies that will generate learning for complex patient populations around the country.

Many of the organizations participating in the competition are at the beginning stages of the RCT journey. Aaron’s account of the Coalition’s RCT process served as a useful reference point for others interested in learning how we cultivated effective research partnerships, and planned and implemented our first randomized evaluation.

Rush University Medical Center, who will co-host our 2018 Putting Care at the Center national conference, was among the attending finalists. Rush was selected as a finalist for their Ambulatory Integration of the Medical and Social (AIMS) model. “The program embeds a social worker within primary and specialty care clinics to assess the needs of complex patients and provide tailored case management to support their specific needs,” said Matt Vail, a clinical social worker at Rush and Coordinator of Rush’s Center for Health and Social Care Integration. “We hope the AIMS model will transform primary care and improve patient outcomes by addressing the social and behavioral barriers to health and wellness.”

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) is a global research center working to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence. The Health Care Delivery Innovation Competition is part of the J-PAL North America’s U.S. Health Care Delivery Initiative, which supports randomized evaluations of strategies that aim to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of healthcare in the United States. To learn more about the competition, please visit their website.

Aaron Truchil serves as the Director of Strategy & Analytics at the Camden Coalition, where he oversees the organization’s data and research activities, including the Coalition’s integrated data system that merges individual-level data from across sectors (health, criminal justice, and other social services), the Coalition’s shared savings performance evaluations, and a variety of applied health services research initiatives aimed at developing an evidence base around community-based care and cost management initiatives.

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