Honors College Thesis


Analyzing the Effects of Psychosocial Determinants on Health Outcomes of Older Adults with Multimorbidity Public Deposited

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  • Multimorbidity, or the concurrent presence of two or more chronic conditions, significantly increases the risk of adverse health outcomes, particularly for adults age 65 and older. Psychosocial, behavioral and social factors can further exacerbate the impact of multimorbidity, but are infrequently and inconsistently documented within electronic health records (EHRs). Research conducted at Oregon Health and Science University (Dorr, et al., 2019) developed a novel natural language processing method to extract four psychosocial factors from EHR notes of patients aged 65+ with multimorbidity. The aims of this thesis were twofold: 1.) to prove the validity of this NLP method and 2.) to examine the effects of these psychosocial factors on health outcomes of older adults with multimorbidity. Statistical analysis and modeling of resulting data revealed that psychosocial factors increased the odds of healthcare utilization and were key elements in predicting these outcomes. Ultimately, this research highlights the benefit of integrating psychosocial factors into population health management efforts and the utility of extracting and analyzing psychosocial data in EHRs.
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  • This thesis was completed as an extension of research conducted by the Care Management Plus Team at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU).



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