What is Big Data in Healthcare?
What is big data in health care? Big data in health care describes the vast amounts of data generated by the mass adoption of Cloud computing and digitization of all types of medical data, which includes medical records potentially so complex or large enough to require the expertise of a physician or other specialized doctor. The term ‘big data’ is frequently bandied about, but what exactly is it?
The reality is that big data analytics has changed the landscape of healthcare significantly, giving physicians access to aggregated data from all types of sources and allowing hospitals to make better decisions based on the collective analysis of clinical records. Previously, healthcare administrators and hospital administrators have had to rely upon reports provided by physicians and other specialists to make critical decisions. However, with the widespread adoption of Cloud computing and digitization technologies, such as Electronic Medical Record Software (EMR) and Software as a Service (SaaS), healthcare administrators can now create and manage a large amount of data on their own. Such data not only enables them to make more informed decisions for their patients but also allows hospitals to leverage the collective analysis for making strategically important decisions about patient care and resources.
In essence, it is like the internet at work for healthcare. Rather than relying on individual expertise to understand patients and make important decisions about their care, hospitals and other medical institutions can use big data analytics to pool their experience and gather and analyze information from multiple sources to improve patient care. For example, EMR and SaaS applications allow hospitals to capture and analyze patient demographics, determine risks for patient recovery, detect trends in treatment and medication use, and measure the effectiveness of different strategies. The collective result is a much more accurate picture of how to deliver excellent care to patients and allows hospitals and doctors to make smarter choices. By taking advantage of these tools, doctors are able to take the hard information about their patients and use it to provide better personalized care.
What is Big Data in Healthcare? Another piece of the puzzle is Precision Medicine. The precision with which medical tests are performed has increased at an unprecedented rate over the last few decades. As these tests become less expensive and less time consuming to perform, healthcare providers are racing to be first to implement these new technologies and keep up with the competition. Manufacturers, too, have jumped on the precision medicine bandwagon, developing wearables and other precision medicine applications to aid in this new era of health information exchange.
What is Big Data in Healthcare? With precision medicine and other forms of advanced analytics, healthcare institutions are taking advantage of patient imagery to monitor and track their patients more closely. This allows hospitals to evaluate their clinical staff and make improvements in staffing, workflow, and patient care. For example, by monitoring and measuring heart rates, nurses can identify which patient may be at risk for sudden cardiac arrest or heart disease. By using this same information, hospitals can implement interventions that could save a patient’s life.
What is Big Data in Healthcare? Medical institutions are implementing big data analytics to reduce overhead and boost revenue. These data can also be used to identify weak areas in which improvements can be made to increase patient care and revenue. In some cases, hospital personnel management can use this information to anticipate staffing needs and generate optimal staffing schedules to avoid surplus activity. This ability to fine tune patient care gives medical institutions a competitive edge in the marketplace and helps them maintain patient satisfaction.
What is Big Data in Healthcare? It is undeniable that healthcare is one of the fastest-growing markets in the world today. With healthcare institutions investing billions of dollars in research and technology, it is no wonder that they are harvesting patient health information to improve the way they care for patients and develop new products and services. According to The McKinsey Global Survey of Healthcare, big data analytics will continue to play an important role in managing healthcare in the coming years as healthcare executives seek to improve the way they monitor, track, and manage healthcare processes.
According to Gurkan Ozcan, director of strategic insight at Forrester Research, “The key to healthcare organizations adopting analytics is understanding that it’s a business-driven industry and not a purely technical one. Healthcare organizations need to develop an understanding of the value of data-driven decision making and how it can optimize the operational processes.” Ozcan went on to add that adoption of big data-driven decision making in the healthcare industry will continue to increase as more healthcare organizations require greater visibility of their patient records. Ultimately, businesses that offer healthcare insight and management solutions will serve to maximize patient health and help reduce unnecessary costs while improving service delivery and patient satisfaction.