Ribera Salud Adopts Predictive Modeling Technology to Improve COVID-19 Outcomes

Business, International


doctors and nurses care for patients in hospital

As scientists continue the effort to develop a COVID-19 vaccine, researchers, doctors, and health systems are evaluating information from six months of experience with the virus to improve treatment and health outcomes.

Ribera Salud's pandemic response also expanded to employ innovative technology known as predictive modeling — an advanced process that analyzes data patterns to calculate the probability of future events. Ribera Salud adopted predictive modeling to give physicians an early warning about which COVID-19 patients are most likely to need ICU care.

To build the model, Ribera Salud leveraged its Data Science Unit, which is a team comprised of clinicians, IT professionals and researchers who develop predictive modeling for improving healthcare. Similar models have been developed for common medical complications, such as pressure sores. The team used anonymized data from the hospitals' COVID-19 patients married with a number of different clinical variables set by doctors, the most up-to-date literature on the virus, and data mining and machine learning techniques.

The result is a model that helps doctors and nurses focus in advance on those patients whose conditions have higher probabilities of significantly worsening.

"It works like a GPS, helping doctors navigate and focus on those patients who really need it," Ribera Salud CEO Alberto de Rosa explained. "A patient admitted to a Ribera hospital is always monitored, and the system alerts in real time the real risk of each patient, providing augmented intelligence to the clinical team. It's personalized medicine for each patient."

The predictive model is already embedded in the current IT systems and in the clinical workflow of Ribera Salud hospitals.

In this new normal, where people continue to contract and need care for COVID-19, to best use limited resources, it’s vital to treat patients before their conditions require ICU care, de Rosa said. Ribera Salud plans to share the new model with other hospitals and is providing more detailed information about it to governments.

The safety of our employees, provider networks, members, and communities remains our uncompromising priority as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve. For more information on how Centene is addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, visit our Resource Center, read more from Ribera Salud's executive team, and experience the perspective of our partners in the U.K.