Ontario government developing health data platform to combat COVID-19

The platform is designed to help researchers develop measures to aid to the healthcare system

The Ontario government is developing a new health data platform to hold secure information to allow researchers to find ways to support the health system.

The platform, which is called the ‘Pandemic Threat Response’ or ‘PANTHR,’ is going to help researchers determine and evaluate responsive measures.

It will help with increasing detection measures for the virus, along with discovering risk factors for vulnerable populations. It is also going to help predict when and where outbreaks may happen.

“Better access to integrated data will improve modelling and research to determine how COVID-19 is evolving, ensuring frontline staff are as prepared as possible in these unprecedented times,” said Ontario Minister of Health Christine Elliott, in a news release.

Researchers will use the platform to collect data to evaluate how preventative and treatment measures are working, and identify where to allocate equipment and other medical resources.

The platform will leverage tools like artificial intelligence to understand the virus and help improve the province’s health system.

The government notes that it is taking measures to ensure patient privacy and explains that the platform is going to provide access to de-identified anonymized data. It will get its data from physician claims submitted to OHIP, discharge summaries of hospital stays and claims for long-term care.

Although PANTHR is currently being developed, it’s unknown when it will launch.

Source: Government of Ontario