Blue Cross, Michigan hospitals collaborate on COVID-19 data collection

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Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and 26 Michigan hospitals are collecting clinical data on COVID-19 patients for a registry that will provide insight into best practices for treating patients.

Titled MI-COVID19, the multisite registry is expected to be one of the largest collections of COVID-19 patient data to date. It was developed at Michigan Medicine, the University of Michigan’s academic medical center, by a team that already leads other Blue Cross-funded collaboratives.

“We’re fortunate in Michigan to have a mechanism in place that enables fast collaboration among providers to address critical health challenges such as the COVID-19 crisis,” Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan President and CEO Daniel Loepp said. “I’m incredibly proud that Blue Cross is one of the partners driving this initiative forward.”

The type of information being collected for the MI-COVID19 clinical registry includes:

  • Symptoms and conditions upon arrival
  • Patient vital signs
  • Medications used before and during hospitalization
  • Medical history, including any concurrent conditions or diagnoses
  • Imaging and lab test results
  • Course of treatment
  • Discharge information and 60-day post-discharge status

Because the registry will include anonymous patient data from multiple hospitals throughout the state, it will offer a line of sight across geographic, economic and demographic boundaries.

By analyzing the registry data, participants of the MI-COVID19 initiative aim to identify factors associated with higher levels of critical COVID-19 illness and worse outcomes; identify patient characteristics and treatment regimens associated with improved outcomes; and understand long-term complications for hospitalized patients.

“Given the rapid onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic, understanding of patient care has been largely anecdotal with limited data for providers to understand how to identify and treat patients,” said Dr. Thomas Simmer, chief medical officer for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “So, using the existing platform we use in the statewide collaborative quality initiatives, we were able to rapidly gain statewide provider interest to convene the staff and hospitals necessary to launch this new effort.”

Data collection is coordinated through the Michigan Hospital Medicine Safety Consortium, a Blue Cross-funded initiative led by physicians at Michigan Medicine and focused on improving quality of care for hospitalized patients who are at risk for adverse events.

Additional Blue Cross programs and U-M faculty and staff are lending expertise, support and resources to this effort.

The list of participating hospitals continues to grow. The current list of participating hospitals includes:

  • Bronson Methodist Hospital (Kalamazoo)
  • Detroit Receiving Hospital
  • Harper Hutzel Hospital (Detroit)
  • Holland Hospital
  • Hurley Medical Center (Flint)
  • Huron Valley Sinai Hospital (Commerce)
  • Lakeland Health
  • McLaren Flint
  • McLaren Greater Lansing
  • McLaren Port Huron
  • Mercy Health St. Mary’s (Grand Rapids)
  • Metro Health Hospital (Wyoming)
  • Metro Health Hospital (Muskegon)
  • Michigan Medicine (Ann Arbor)
  • MidMichigan Alpena
  • MidMichigan Gratiot
  • MidMichigan Midland
  • Munson Medical Center (Traverse City)
  • Sinai Grace Hospital (Detroit)
  • Sparrow Hospital (Lansing)
  • Spectrum Health (Grand Rapids)
  • St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor Hospital
  • St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea Hospital
  • St. Joseph Mercy Livingston Hospital (Howell)
  • St. Joseph Mercy Oakland Hospital (Pontiac)
  • St. Mary Mercy Livonia

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