New Analytic Tools to Support Proactive Client Engagement: Demographic Forecasts of Population Health Dynamics


Jack Baker present Analytics support client engagement

Jack Baker, PhD

Senior Research Analyst, HealthFitness Corporation

Tracking population health trends is a fundamental activity in our industry. Most efforts go about this retrospectively, calculating measures such as prevalence and risk-migration as indicators of health trends in client populations. In this presentation, it is argued that forward-looking forecasts of prospective population health dynamics provide a superior planning tool for wellness and health promotion organizations to strategically engage with clients.

A five-year prospective demographic forecast was utilized to project population health dynamics.

Measures utilized were cross-sectional prevalence and longitudinal risk-migration of four healthy lifestyle behaviors (aerobic activity, eating out, tobacco use, and stress risk) and two bio-metric outcomes (healthy weight and blood pressure) are provided.

Stochastic demographic projections are employed using a 2015 base over a five-year horizon to 2020.

Our results will track cross-sectional prevalence and longitudinal risk-migration within our Book of Business study population over the 2015-2020 period. Forecasts will provide both point estimates and uncertainty intervals for both measures and identify emerging and future population health trends of importance to strategic planning for wellness and health promotion initiatives. Specific illustrations of how wellness and health promotion organizations may incorporate the use of demographic forecasts in strategic planning and client engagement will be provided.

Presenter Bio(s):

Jack Baker is a Senior Research Analyst with HealthFitness, an award-winning, URAC and NCQA-accredited provider of health management, fitness and recreation, and condition management solutions. He holds MS & PhD degrees in anthropology from the University of New Mexico. His primary research has spanned the areas of bio-anthropology and applied demography, with his work on small-area demographic models being featured in various peer-reviewed journals and one recent and one forthcoming monograph in the Springer Population Studies Series. For ten years, Jack developed and led a university-based research team focused on small-area demographic projection and GIS data development. During this time, he provided expert consulting services to a variety of government and government-related agencies, two of which include the US Census Bureau and the National Academies of Science. Jack is a member of the Population Association of America (PAA), the PAA’s Committee on Applied Demography, the System Dynamics Society, and is a participant in the International Microsimulation Association. His current research focuses upon melding methods of microsimulation and agent-based modeling, machine learning, and demographic projection to capture micro-macro linkages in the analysis and forecasting of population health dynamics. In 2019, Jack and his collaborators will share many of their recent innovations in a Springer Brief in Population Studies entitled: Demographic Microsimulation in Wellness and Health Promotion: Computational Tools for Modeling Population Health Dynamics.