The Indiana Management Performance Hub (MPH), overseen by the state’s Chief Data Officer, houses the integrated Education and Workforce Development database, which brings together data from 12 state agencies, including: the Commission for Higher Education, Department of Education, Department of Health, Department of Corrections, Department of Workforce Development, and Family and Social Services Administration. In addition, MPH has created integrated databases to address pressing program and policy issues related to COVD-19, opioids, Medicaid, fiscal transparency, and other areas. MPH has been at the forefront of using data to drive decision-making for Indiana’s COVID-19 response, including a study to better understand the prevalence of the coronavirus and/or its antibodies.
The Indiana Data Partnership, launched in 2019, brings together government, nonprofit, and private sector entities to share data, talent, and technology to solve key challenges impacting Indiana residents. The partnership was formed as an extension of the Indiana Management Performance Hub to create a secure, replicable, and sustainable framework to help partner organizations use shared data in coordinating efforts and maximizing holistic solutions. Initial projects included combating the opioid epidemic, improving education and workforce development, mapping local health delivery, and a networking analysis.
Colorado’s Department of Public Health and Environment extended its geospatial data and resource library to encompass a wide range of COVID-19-related data, including: hospital data, incidence and epidemic curve data, outbreak data, and surveillance data. Daily state-level data keeps policymakers informed with up-to-date information on COVID-19-related indicators. The department’s open data portal also maps operational community testing sites that receive COVID-19 testing resources from the state.
In 2019, the Colorado Governor’s Office and the Colorado Evaluation and Action Lab at the University of Denver co-designed the Linked Information Network of Colorado (LINC) to facilitate data sharing for research and analytics purposes as a way to improve state policies and programs. LINC, through the Colorado Evaluation and Action Lab, produces informative evidence about the impacts of state programs, and those reports are shared with agency leadership and staff during cabinet working group meetings. Using this data, the lab and state agencies have collaborated on projects to improve outcomes in areas such as education, renewable energy, reentry and racial disparities in criminal justice, prenatal health, and the early childhood education workforce.
In addition, the Colorado Department of Higher Education was the first state agency in the nation to partner on a pilot project with the U.S. Census Bureau to match federal unemployment insurance data with postsecondary degree completion data. At the state and county level, the Colorado Department of Human Services’ C-Stat performance management system facilitates data sharing among its 64 counties by providing dashboards to track key metrics and Performance and Partnerships Exchanges to facilitate sharing of best practices.
The Colorado Department of Public Safety worked with The Division of Criminal Justice to gather, analyze, and publish multi-agency data, prompting recommendations improving criminal justice outcomes and equity to be made by the Colorado Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice.
The Connecticut Departments of Education and Social Services leveraged data-sharing agreements by matching student and SNAP benefit data to automatically certify SNAP Pandemic EBT for more than 287,000 Connecticut students who receive free or reduced-price meals. This allowed the state to provide meals to 82,000 students participating in only the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program, but who do not receive food assistance through SNAP, Medicaid, or other food assistance programs. The state also partnered with food retailers to allow SNAP enrollees to use their benefits to purchase eligible food items online.
Connecticut’s Department of Children and Families, in partnership with the Harvard Kennedy School’s Government Performance Lab, implemented an Enhanced Service Coordination project in 2019. One part of the state’s 2020-2024 Child and Family Services Plan, it seeks to improve the process of matching clients to services across the state. The innovations include real-time use of data to inform organizational processes and procurement as well as active contract management strategies to further improve service delivery.
In 2020, Massachusetts launched the Eviction Diversion Initiative (EDI) led by the Department of Housing and Community Development to support tenants and landlords during the financial challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. EDI was developed and is managed by a cross-agency team that uses data from the state’s shelter services, rental assistance programs, trial courts, regional administering agencies (RAAs), housing consumer and education centers, community mediation services, legal services, and Mass211 call centers to assess rental assistance demand and prevent eviction.
By pulling datasets from across different divisions and organizations, EDI senior staff have been able to better understand the multi-faceted dimensions of eviction diversion and track the success of its programs more holistically. The dedication of these resources necessitated robust data collection, analysis, and visualization. EDI’s internal dashboard is an integrated data tracking tool used daily to monitor program performance and data-driven decision-making. The EDI public dashboard is updated monthly to provide transparency and accountability and share progress with the public, legislature, and other key stakeholders.
The Massachusetts Economic Research Department is a team within the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD) that analyzes economic data and labor market information on Massachusetts, including employment and wage data, unemployment rate, short-term and long-term projections, industry and occupational statistics, and other workforce statistical information by labor market areas. Senior leadership at EOLWD uses this data to proactively respond to Massachusetts’ workforce needs in education, skill development, and industry changes. This data analysis is also accessible to the public through over 20 public economic tools and 25 public dashboards that are updated regularly.
In 2019, Michigan’s Children’s Services Agency designed new executive performance dashboards that offer a comprehensive picture of agency operations through 42 carefully selected metrics. For each major area of the child welfare system –centralized intake, field investigations, open cases, and out-of-home placements – the department prioritized the most important management questions in each of three performance categories: (1) system capacity, (2) program quality, and (3) child and family outcomes. It then designed a dashboard metric to present data for each of these questions.
As part of its COVID-19 response, the State of Minnesota had a Community Resiliency and Recovery workgroup composed of external advisors – community leaders representing underrepresented groups including residents identifying as BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and persons with a disability – at least monthly to discuss the progress of state’s COVID-19 response. A component of these meetings was a discussion of the public data on the Data by Race/Ethnicity section of the state’s COVID-19 dashboard. These meetings led to substantive changes to the dashboard, including adding data on congregate care settings such as nursing homes and people experiencing homelessness.
In late 2020, Minnesota analyzed a combination of Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 case data with Department of Education learning model data (which shows where students were in-person learning versus remote learning). The results showed minimal difference in COVID-19 cases among elementary schools when comparing in-person to remote learning models. As a result, the Governor chose to allow more flexibility for school districts to provide in-person learning for elementary students along with the support to do so safely.
North Carolina has taken a data-driven approach to equitable vaccine distribution. This includes removing systemic barriers to vaccine access, such as transportation, increasing vaccine allotments for counties with larger populations from historically marginalized communities, and prioritizing community-based vaccination approaches. Vaccine providers are required to use the state’s vaccine management system, which requires demographic data to register someone for a shot. This has improved data collection and increased the equitable distribution of vaccines. In July 2021, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report highlighting how North Carolina’s focus on equity in administering vaccines increased COVID-19 vaccination rates in Black and Hispanic communities.
New Jersey’s Prescription Monitoring Program integrates data from multiple state agencies, including the Department of Health, the Division of Consumer Affairs, the Office of the Attorney General, and other law enforcement bodies, to power the Overdose Data Dashboard. The Department of Health uses the dashboard to make decisions about access to medications, such as naloxone, designed to rapidly reverse opioid overdose and harm reduction services.
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) saw a need to reduce infant mortality rates across the state. ODH partnered with the InnovateOhio Platform (IOP) to expand and enhance predictive profiling models that leveraged cross-agency data to determine those most at risk for infant mortality and design targeted interventions based on the data. The project involved the Department of Health (ODH), Department of Medicaid, Department of Job and Family Services, Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
The Infant Mortality Phase 1 study identified that more than 22,000 low-income mothers enrolled in Medicaid were not cross-enrolled in WIC or SNAP benefits, which are proven to reduce the risk of infant mortality for enrollees. This study provided new insights about some of the most vulnerable residents (at-risk mothers and children) in Ohio. By leveraging the InnovateOhio Platform, ODH, in partnership with departments of job and family services, mental health and addiction services, and Medicaid, the platform securely links more than 30 data sets to form a 360-view of the clients that allowed the state to (1) determine indicators that are significantly tied to infant mortality – leading indicators of positive and negative outcomes; (2) create models to predict characteristics of mothers most likely to benefit from interventions; and (3) explore which state programs for mothers are most effective.
Ohio continues to help mothers and children, as well as continue to engage communities through the WIC, TANF, and SNAP programs. A study using data from the IOP found 280,000 Ohioans currently enrolled in Medicaid and SNAP/TANF who may also be eligible to receive WIC benefits. This insight is supporting the state’s efforts to boost cross-enrollment processes across agencies. Through the analysis, visualization, and capabilities of the IOP, the state is able to understand the current challenges and inform evidence-based and data-driven decisions.
The Rhode Island COVID-19 Task Force, created by an executive order, assisted the Department of Business Regulation (DBR) with improving public health by ensuring business compliance with COVID-19 mandates. Rather than taking a punitive approach, the agency applied data analysis to identify businesses that might need assistance. The analysis found, for example, that some minority-owned businesses faced language barriers that impeded their ability to fully comply with the mandates. As a result, DBR partnered with community-based organizations, such as the Center for Southeast Asians, to provide signage that was translated in multiple languages.
Rhode Island’s Data Ecosystem, managed by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS), uses state data from more than 15 sources, including health, child welfare, and human services. The ecosystem is led by a Director of Data and Analytics and a team of analysts who use integrated data to improve state programs. The ecosystem produces regular dashboards that are used for internal performance management meetings centered on the PULSE framework – Performance, Utilization, Leadership Support, and Execution – to manage and improve performance of the programs and agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services secretariat.
Cross-agency, shared data benefitted the State’s COVID-19 response in several ways:
The South Carolina Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Office maintains an integrated data system, which links individuals being served by more than 20 state agencies and other organizations. This system has facilitated program improvement efforts and numerous research studies, including a randomized controlled trial (RCT) as a part of the state’s Pay for Success initiative to improve outcomes for low-income mothers and their babies. South Carolina has continued to expand its evaluations, including an RCT on the impact of Managed Care Organizations.
The Utah Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget and Department of Health partnered with the University of Utah to create the Health & Economic Recovery Outreach (HERO) Project, which studied the two COVID-19 testing strategies in schools to resume and sustain in-person K-12 instruction. The “Test to Play” program required students to take COVID-19 tests to participate in extracurricular activities, and the “Test to Stay” is an optional program for schools with outbreaks. Combined with other prevention strategies, the testing strategies demonstrated promising results in mitigating the spread of the virus. The studies showed that they contributed to the opening and provision of in-person instruction –saving an estimated 109,752 in-person instruction student days last school year. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recognized this approach as an emerging practice for other states seeking to return to in-person instruction.
The Utah Governor’s COVID-19 Multicultural Advisory Committee includes a racially and ethnically diverse cross-section of community advocates, nonprofits, state agencies, faith-based organizations, healthcare and industry partners, educators, and business leaders. The committee, in partnership with community-based partners, developed the “Striving Toward Equity: Utah’s COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Roadmap,” a plan for equitable vaccine distribution across the state that incorporated suggestions for accurate collection and reporting of racial and ethnic data. As the state implemented the plan, missing race/ethnicity data was reduced by 50%, and vaccination rates improved for some communities –the vaccination rate among Hispanic/Latino populations increased by 463% in the same time that the rate for the white population increased by 262%. The legislature has since committed additional funding to studying race and ethnic data disparities.
The Utah Office of the State Auditor’s Project KIDS is a specialized performance audit that integrates financial, operational, and performance data to improve data-driven decision-making in the state’s K-12 public education system. By incorporating financial, operational, and performance data sourced from three different databases, the framework enables stakeholders and the public to understand resources spent and student-level performance. The school spending map and other analytic resources allow policymakers to make data-informed spending decisions.
The Utah Data Research Center (UDRC) was created by a 2017 law to integrate data from the Utah System of Higher Education, Utah System of Technical Colleges, Utah State Board of Education, Utah Department of Health, and the Utah Department of Workforce Services. Together, these constitute the “P20W” pipeline. UDRC offers “data products” (such as academic-quality research, reports, and dashboards) and “data as a product” for external researchers. UDRC annually publishes a research agenda in priority order including the primary stakeholder and research description. It also maintains a public archive of previous years’ learning agendas.
The Virginia COVID-19 response command includes a Health Equity Work Group charged with “prioritizing resources and decision points impacting marginalized and at-risk individuals and communities.” The workgroup overlayed geospatial and race and ethnicity data to establish testing areas in communities, which later allowed the public health department to target the distribution of masks and hand sanitizer in communities that are typically underserved by government programs.
In 2020, Virginia utilized its existing Framework for Addiction Analysis and Community Transformation (FAACT) to share new data and provide actionable information as part of the state’s COVID-19 response. FAACT – a cross-agency, cloud-based, data-sharing and analytics platform – was previously used as part of the state’s work on the opioid crisis to generate actionable insights about the contributing factors to opioid abuse, as well as to collate the most effective community responses. According to the Beeck Center, since the launch of FAACT in 2017, Virginia has seen a decrease in the number of drug overdose deaths involving opioids.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Virginia’s workforce system launched an improved integrated data system in 2020, governed by a data trust, that improves user experience through the new Virginia Career Works Referral Portal. The related Virginia Career Works Dashboard is a data visualization tool that conveys information about labor conditions and allows agencies to make real-time, data-driven decisions. These innovative systems demonstrated a potential cost savings of more than 94% over traditional approaches.
The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services Research and Data Analysis (RDA) division integrates client databases with data from 10 state agencies, 40 separate data systems, and individuals receiving services through publicly funded health and human services programs in Washington. Data is used for rapid-cycle policy analysis, program evaluation, predictive modeling, and performance measurement to help agencies understand how health services and other factors are related to outcomes for persons served by public assistance programs. Predictive modeling and clinical decision support tools developed and maintained in RDA’s integrated data environment have been used by the state’s Health Home Program – which provides intensive care management services to high-risk Medicaid beneficiaries – to improve health outcomes and lower costs. These lower costs have resulted in tens of millions in dollars in shared savings payments from the federal U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
The Washington State Institute for Public Policy maintains and uses a criminal history database that links records across courts, adult corrections, and juvenile rehabilitation over time. This database allows the institute to investigate long-term outcomes for individuals in the state who participated in state-funded initiatives and programs related to criminal justice and juvenile rehabilitation. Recently, this database has been used to examine a variety of issues, such as the effectiveness of Aggression Replacement Training provided by the juvenile courts and long-term outcomes for youth dually involved in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems.