iSchool Professor Gets Paper Accepted to the IMIA Yearbook of Medical Informatics

Dr. Zhe He, an Associate Professor in the School of Information, will publish an opinion survey paper in the International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA) Yearbook of Medical Informatics 2023.

Zhe He
Dr. Zhe He

Since its inception in 1992, the IMIA Yearbook of Medical Informatics has been one of the most visible and valuable products IMIA provides to both its members and the biomedical and health informatics community at large. The IMIA Yearbook of Medical Informatics is designed to present an overview of the most original, excellent state-of-the-art research in the area of health and biomedical informatics of the past year; to provide surveys about recent developments, and comprehensive reviews on relevant topics in this field; and to provide information about IMIA (

Each year’s yearbook has 10-13 sections focusing on subfields of biomedical informatics such as “Bioinformatics and Translational Informatics”, “Cancer Informatics”, “Clinical Information Systems”, “Clinical Research Informatics”, “Consumer Health Informatics and Education”, “Decision Support”, and “Public Health and Epidemiology Informatics”. Each section has a survey paper, a synopsis, and best paper selection of the subfield. The survey papers are invited by the editors of the yearbook to focus on significant development in knowledge and methods over the past two to three years. They should provider readers with insights into critical advances, placing them within the overall context of open problems and opportunities in the subfields. All the survey papers are peer reviewed by leading experts in the field to ensure relevance, coverage, and high quality.

This year, Dr. He was invited to write a survey paper for the section on “Public Health and Epidemiology Informatics”. In this accepted paper titled “Enriching Real-world Data with Social Determinants of Health for Health Outcomes and Health Equity: Successes, Challenges, and Opportunities”, researchers identified gaps in capturing social determinants of health (SDoH) data in existing electronic health record (EHR) systems and opportunities to leverage informatics approaches to collect SDoH information either from structured and unstructured EHR data or through linking with public surveys and environmental data. The team also surveyed recently developed ontologies for representing SDoH information and approaches that incorporate SDoH for disease risk stratification, public health crisis prediction, and development of tailored interventions.

“This publication is probably the most important one in my career so far and we hope to disseminate the most notable development and research findings in this area in the past 2-3 years. Being invited to write such a paper is a recognition of my contribution to our field and international reputation which I have been building over the past 15 years,” says Dr. He. “I hope this paper can guide the research and standardization on SDoH data as well as the development of SDoH-tailored interventions for disease prevention and management. The ultimate goal of my research is to improve health outcomes while reducing disparities.”

Dr. He is the leading author of this paper. The other authors of this paper include Drs. Emily Pfaff (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), Serena Guo (University of Florida), Yi Guo (University of Florida), Yonghui Wu (University of Florida), Cui Tao (University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston), Gregor Stiglic (University of Maribor), and Jiang Bian (University of Florida).