Every year, workers who have lost their jobs because of a health condition become invisible. None of the institutions with which these workers might come in contact keep or report statistics on an event like this—not medical offices, workplaces, payer organizations, or insurance companies. As a result, the party that knows what happened and what, if anything, was done about it is often not the party that has the data about the outcome. So in the end, the parties who contributed to the outcome cannot be held accountable.
To reverse this trend, data that captures the behaviors and activities of providers as well as changes in a patient’s work status must be collected. Good candidates for capturing these data are electronic health records (EHRs) and physicians’ fee schedules and billing data (see Recommendation #5).