Lisa Nicolaou is the MiHIN Social Determinant of Health (SDOH) Program Director. This new role provides leadership in the emerging Social/Technical domain to bridge the rapid escalation in information surrounding SDOH and the technical leadership to ensure alignment with national data standards to ensure an appropriate data stream for patients, clinicians and policymakers. Lisa’s early experience as an Emergency Department Nurse in inner city Baltimore, cemented her convictions on how unmet social needs impact individual and population health, long before the term SDOH became commonplace. A technically superior medical institution left to the mercy of a system, not prepared or capable of adapting to meet the needs of the population they served. Patching people up to send them on to Social Workers whose impossible job was to figure out how to implement that superior medical care. A close mentor wisely once stated “health and wellness does not need to be complex”; this is a lesson that continues to guide Lisa today.
Lisa understands well the role and value that technology can bring to health and social care. From her early Nursing career with The University of Toronto and Johns Hopkins Medical Institution she went on to a master’s degree in Nursing Informatics from the University of Maryland, where she also taught for many years. Her education in Nursing and Information Science allows her to bridge the divide between the social, health and technology domains. Her experience in program building, change management and healthcare transformation provide context, longitudinal background and a depth of understanding. She has published on healthcare