What is Big Data in Healthcare and Its Future Impact?
What is big data in healthcare? It refers to the use of big data analytics to transform large volume health information into concise reports that are easy to read, analyze and act upon. A large amount of health records have to be stored for patients, doctors, hospitals and other health-related organizations. These records require a lot of storage and require regular updating to make sure they’re accurate. Since so much is at stake, the medical world is making strides every day in the area of information management and big data analytics.
One example of using healthcare big data to improve healthcare is through medical imaging. One way to store such records is through electronic health records (EHR) system. Electronic health records (EHR) is a kind of database management system that stores patient information in a database that can be accessed by various people for research, consultation or decision support. Doctors, nurses and other medical staff can access the records at any point of time with the click of a button. This is particularly useful in big healthcare institutions where access to patient records is common.
Another use of big data analytics in healthcare is through predictive maintenance therapy. This method involves using historical data from previous seasons to anticipate future patient outcomes. For hospitals, this reduces missed diagnosing and saves on diagnostic cost, as well as preventing emergency room visits and unnecessary patient admissions.
Patients also can benefit from data analysis in healthcare. A particularly worrying trend has been the rise in self-harm among patients in hospitals. In the past, self-harm was rare. Increasingly, it is now common practice for patients to self-medicate with medications even when they don’t require them. Such actions threaten the quality of care given by healthcare institutions and put patients at risk of contracting infectious diseases.
Another application of data analytics in healthcare is to track patient safety. The occurrence of emergency room visits, critical care hospital admissions and drug overdoses are real threats to the safety of patients and staff. To reduce the occurrence of such medical events, healthcare institutions have implemented security systems like patient tracking systems that can provide staff members with information about where and when patients are coming in contact with dangerous materials. Additionally, such systems have provided healthcare workers with the information they need to perform their jobs efficiently, and such information has been instrumental in improving patient safety.
Health businesses stand to reap the most benefits from predictive analytics. This technology allows companies to take an active role in managing health by providing business intelligence tools that allow them to predict changes in consumers’ habits, behaviors and preferences. These businesses can tailor their services to better serve their clients. In essence, it helps business clients make better business decisions.
As mentioned earlier, big data analytics is a powerful tool for improving healthcare. However, it can be utilized for a number of other reasons, as well. One example is through strategic management. It has been found that managers who have access to the right kind of information can improve the overall efficiency of their organization. This improvement, in turn, can translate into more satisfied employees, which lead to higher productivity, and ultimately to the company’s profit margin.
The use of data analytics in healthcare is only going to continue to grow in its impact on the world of healthcare. With this in mind, it is likely that patient records will soon be one of the main sources of data. As patient records grow more accessible to the point where patients themselves can request their own reports on their health, healthcare providers will need to use predictive analytics to monitor patient health more intently. Whether using traditional risk metrics or new forms of predictive analytics, the use of patient data is only going to continue to grow, making healthcare a much more profitable field.