City of Philadelphia, Health and Human Services

Description:  The Data Management Office (DMO) is a central component of the Office of the Deputy Managing Director of Health and Human Services. DMO collects, analyzes, and reports on social services data, including but not limited to the following:

  • mental health
  • substance abuse
  • child welfare
  • juvenile justice
  • lead exposure
  • emergency shelter
  • local incarceration

The purpose of a centralized data management office is to provide public officials, policymakers, and practitioners with accurate, timely information to help them make data-driven decisions.

The Data Management Office operates and maintains the CARES integrated data system (IDS), which receives information from 11 unique source databases. They also provide research and academic communities, policymakers and practitioners with information to promote data-driven decision making.


IDS Projects to Inform Policy

Pipeline Up to Stable Housing (PUSH)

Summary: Though estimates on the number of youth experiencing homelessness vary greatly based on age and definition, one national estimate suggests that as many as 7% of youth ages 11-18 experience homelessness. Similarly, a recent local Philadelphia estimate found nearly 8% of youth within the same age range who were enrolled in public high schools had experienced homelessness. The Department of Human Services (DHS) received a two-year planning grant for its proposed Pipeline Up to Stable Housing (PUSH), a strategic intervention to reduce homelessness for youth aging out of the foster care system. DHS will work with city departments and non-profit agencies to develop a protocol for assessing risk and protective factors that impact youth and young adults at risk for homelessness and to assess our readiness as a system to move toward a streamlined service array that is outcome-focused and evidence-based. To support this effort, the Data Management Office (DMO) has created a longitudinal data set, integrating data across eleven data sources for 18 to 24 years olds aging out of DHS and has transformed the data to provide a profile of each individual’s service touch points from the date of birth through the twenty-fourth birthday.

Link to Project Reports: Pipeline Up to Stable Housing (PUSH)


Examining Multiple Early Childhood Risks in Philadelphia

Summary: The Data Management Office partnered with the Penn Child Research Center at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education to create a data model that tracks evidence-based early risk experiences for children 0 to 5 years old. Evidence-based early childhood risks include low birth weight or preterm birth, inadequate prenatal care, teen mother, low maternal education, homelessness, lead exposure, and child maltreatment. Building on the early childhood risk research by the Penn Child Research Center, the objectives of this investigation were to examine prevalence rates of these early childhood risks in Philadelphia compared to national rates, determine the percentage of children experiencing multiple early childhood risks, and make visible the geographic distribution of children experiencing multiple early childhood risks across the city. The ability to monitor this information on a regular basis can provide City leaders with the facts they need to guide their decisions about where to direct public funds and staff to serve children in greatest need.

Link to Project Reports: Examining Multiple Early Childhood Risks in Philadelphia


Understanding Multi‐System Youth and their Patterns of Service Use

Summary:  This study integrates data from public schools (absenteeism/truancy), foster care, juvenile justice, homelessness and behavioral health services, to better understand the prevalence and types of multisystem services use in Philadelphia. Results suggest that some multi-system services use is intentional, such as transfers from juvenile justice to mental health residential treatment, whereas other patterns reflect the complex and overlapping needs of youth moving among service sectors. Results may suggest areas of collaborative service planning and integrated service strategies, to improve outcomes and reduce costs and duplication of services.

Link to Project Reports:  Understanding Multi‐System Youth and their Patterns of Service Use


Previous Philadelphia IDS Projects


Multi-site Research Project

Educational Well-being of Children in Assisted Housing Programs
Service Use and Outcomes for Veterans and Non-Veterans after Release from Jail in Three Cities