Data and Performance Evaluation Committee Meeting Minutes, 12/15/09

In Attendance:  Tim Brennan, PVPC, Ron Krakowiak, HAP, Lori Ingraham, Easthampton Savings Bank, Erica Johnson, PVPC, Pamela Schwartz, Network Coordinator, Charlie Knight, Network, Andrea Miller, ServiceNet, John Klenakis, UMass Donahue Institute, Michael Doherty, Housing Court, Rob Fields, Housing Court, John Umile, Housing Court, Rebecca Muller, GrantsWork, Suzanne Smith, Network Data Analyst


1.        Mission Statement: The data committee mission statement was approved as follows:

The Data Committee seeks to:

      • Promote the effective use of information and data to inform regional network policies and practices
      • Foster provider participation and feedback in data-related activities
      • Facilitate the integration of evaluation, quality management, and performance measurement into network-sponsored activities
      • Develop timely, relevant, innovative and useful data-based communication tools to convey Network achievements and serve the information needs of multiple constituencies including providers, consumers, and community members.

2.      Flow of Data and Information: Committee clarified the lines of reporting and communication with respect to data.  Data that is collected within a committee will be compiled by the data analyst and reported back to the respective committee.  It will also go to the data committee for analysis, validity checks, and recommendations for further analysis.  Data committee will send on to Steering Committee (via data analyst) for discussion and any action deemed necessary.   Reports will then go to Leadership Council.

3.      Evaluation Plan: Committee discussed the measures that could be included in an evaluation plan, much of which is already required to be reported by ICHH.  Measurement would include Community-level impact  measures such as incidence and prevalence rates; Individual-level measures such as number of homeless people, the number of people being housed, the change in homelessness for all over time, stabilization measures; Families Measures which would track prevention and diversion, and the number of families in motels and hotels.  We also want to track the extent to which housing court interventions have an impact on success.

Action: Andrea and Suzanne will bring a list of proposed measurements to the next meeting for discussion and approval, and Suzanne will look into what would be needed to track the impact of housing court involvement.

4.       Protocols Related to Data:  The committee discussed protocols related to data collection and barriers to access.  A significant challenge is balancing the need for good information with the need for confidentiality. Consent forms need to be modified to reflect ICHH.  Providers need to be assured that client data will be used for research and analysis purposes and not to adversely harm any individual or to deny services.  At the same time, de-duplication does require either the use of personal identifiers or hashing of ID’s such that it can be done across the continuums and over time.  A campaign is needed to show the ways in which data will be useful in measuring our progress.  It was noted that this should not slow our progress in reporting on already aggregated data to the extent that we can move that forward.

Actions: Subcommittee formed to help data analyst strategize about these issues.  Committee will look into issue of confidentiality agreements and hashing of id’s and investigate the need for personal identifiers.  Andrea Miller, Ron Krakowiak, Charlie Knight, Rebecca Muller, and Suzanne Smith.

Data Analyst will connect with other regional network analysts to share strategies on these and other issues.

5.       Performance Measurement: Pamela Schwartz reported that 50 families have been served as of the end of November, and that the majority of these were served through HAP.  She noted that as providers introduce more flexibility about how tiers are used, the dollar amount per family will likely increase, resulting in a lower number of families served with available dollars.  There is a higher level of need among families than projected.

Next Meeting: Tuesday, January 19th, 12:30 – 2:00, Housing Court, 37 Elm St., Springfield.

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