How HarrisLogic Helped Net $30 Million Through Mental Health Jail Diversion with SAP Data Solutions

HCA News Brand Insights
FEBRUARY 08, 2019
sap hana,harrislogic jail,mental health jail diversion,sap health
SAP data solutions help HarrisLogic achieve cost savings, federal match funding and better patient outcomes in Dallas County, Texas. This branded article is sponsored by SAP.

The biggest psychiatric care centers in the U.S. are jails — a situation that spawns many challenges, consumes precious resources and forces delays in care. Nationally, it can take correctional facilities weeks to identify a patient with a mental health condition. “During that period, bad things can happen,” says Hudson Harris, chief engagement officer of HarrisLogic, a behavioral health tech and clinical services company. “They might miss current treatments or appointments, which worsens their condition. Jail is really the worst possible place for them.”

To overcome this challenge, many justice systems collaborate with jails to swiftly divert patients with mental health conditions to less restrictive environments, which could save money and reduce the odds of recidivism and suicide. Enterprise data and analytics are emerging as critical tools in this vital healthcare effort.

HarrisLogic, for example, leveraged SAP enterprise data solutions to help Dallas County, Texas, net $30 million in cost savings and federal match funding, a 4-to-1 ROI for its high-tech mental health jail diversion program. Following implementation, the program could identify people with mental health conditions in just 15 minutes, and the number of patients identified per month climbed from several hundred to several thousand per month. SAP enterprise software empowered HarrisLogic and Dallas to achieve not only greater efficiencies but also stronger patient outcomes.

“That’s the result of a fast, always-on, reliable platform that is monitoring for these patients as they come into the system,” Harris tells Healthcare Analytics News™ Brand Insights. “Technology has given us this opportunity to revolutionize the way we think about and deliver behavioral healthcare.”
 

How Analytics Improve Behavioral Health

Among healthcare providers, HarrisLogic is unique in that the company provides crisis operations, mental health jail diversion, emergency department consultations — and it develops technology solutions for these clinical operations. (More than 20 years ago, for instance, the group built its first electronic health record system.) The strength of its in-house innovation has earned HarrisLogic desirable contracts and the chance to make history.

In 2014, the company contracted to build a technological platform to support mental health jail diversion in Dallas County. Not long after, HarrisLogic, in conjunction with SAP, created one of the first pilots of its kind to merge mental health and crisis data with criminal justice data to build a model that could predict who was most at risk for recidivism. HarrisLogic required enterprise data infrastructure that was fast, reliable and HIPAA compliant. After evaluating the field of offerings, the group selected SAP HANA.

Today, the tech platform pulls actionable data from jails, courts, Medicaid services encounters, crisis operations and elsewhere. Those data streams result in more rapid identification, which helps providers assess patients’ needs, determine where they will be treated best and connect them to mental health services. Diverting a nonviolent offender can save Dallas thousands of dollars per incident, and the platform earns tens of millions of dollars in cost avoidance, reductions in higher levels of care and federal grant matching.

It also helps patients. Harris notes that his company’s work supported the exceptional clinical efforts in the Dallas jail diversion program by integrating data streams and providing decision support. Together, the clinical services leveraging HarrisLogic technology brought down the average daily jail population of people with mental health conditions by 20 percent, and recidivism has fallen by 5.5 points over a period of four years, between 2013 and 2017.

“You get these exponential feedback loops where people are getting better and better,” he adds. “We have the same people doing the same job, but they’re reaching five times as many people, and that’s extremely compelling.”
 

Efficiencies & Better Outcomes Open the Door

Jail is just one spoke in a wheel that cycles patients with mental illnesses through periods of great risk. Technology paired with quality clinical effort can also help reduce inpatient hospital admissions, thereby helping people improve their chances to live happy, healthy lives, Harris says. The emergency department represents yet another area where enterprise data and analytics can help these patients break the cycle.

So it’s no surprise that HarrisLogic provides crisis assessment and intervention services for 11 Dallas health systems and 27 emergency departments. After the company took on this new role, inpatient bed placement for the target population significantly decreased. Instead of being admitted to inpatient facilities, these patients often receive evidence-based care where they live, maintaining their support systems and preventing the destabilizing effects associated with jails or hospitals.

In Dallas, all of these improvements have combined to achieve something more powerful than most people could have anticipated.

“What you have is a transformation of the system driven by technology-enabled services and data-driven decision-making,” Harris says. “We can really tell stories where the human impact is also supported by the economic impact. At the end of the day, that’s the only way to get things done.”

But HarrisLogic still has more to gain from SAP enterprise data solutions. Harris and his colleagues are eyeing high-tech behavioral health programs in universities, data anonymization efforts and even an initiative to help medical schools and residency programs fight the scourge of physician burnout.

Learn more about how SAP can help healthcare providers achieve efficiencies and clinical excellence. Hudson Harris will further describe how HarrisLogic leveraged SAP enterprise data solutions to reach its goals from 10:30 to 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 14, in SAP booth #2332 at HIMSS19. Register here.

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