Big Data Healthcare Analytics: Why It’s Important and How It’s Being Leveraged

image: freedigitalphotos.net/photoexplorer

image: freedigitalphotos.net/photoexplorer

While many industries have quickly adopted Big Data Analytics to decipher and employ all the data they’ve collected about their customers and clients over the years, the healthcare industry has been a little slow to move towards using Big Data. Confidentiality was a major concern. Although everyone in the healthcare industry is charged with helping their patients, protecting patient’s information is just as important and many pharmaceutical companies, providers, and payers didn’t want to risk patient confidentiality in the past. Fortunately, technology with the use of Big Data Healthcare Analytics is transforming the industry.

As times change technology advances and pressure to keep the cost of medical care down weighs heavily on everyone in the industry; leveraging Big Data Healthcare Analytics makes perfect sense for everyone involved.

What Is Big Data Healthcare Analytics?

image: freedigitalphotos.net/adamr

image: freedigitalphotos.net/adamr

The healthcare industry has always collected information about patients. From data contained on patient’s EMRs to information about past treatments at their primary physician’s office to data about the medications patients are taking, data fuels the healthcare system. Unfortunately, the data often sits in a particular department or office’s silo of data, inaccessible to all other providers a patient sees. Within the medical field, Big Data Healthcare Analytics helps overcome this conundrum by allowing medical professionals to leverage technological advances. In essence, within the medical field, Big Data Healthcare Analytics is the process of collecting and using patient data to improve outcomes and deliver patient-centric medical care. Some uses of Big Data Healthcare Analytics include:

    •Reducing costs
    •Delivering telemedicine
    •Collecting patient information from smartphone apps
    •Enhancing IT systems with visualization tools to improve treatments patients receive

With Big Data supporting healthcare from end-to-end, patients are one of the main beneficiaries to using Big Data Healthcare Analytics.

“Numbers have an important story to tell. They rely on you to give them a voice.” Stephen Few – author

How Big Data in Healthcare Affects Patients

image: freedigitalphotos.net/photostock

image: freedigitalphotos.net/photostock

The primary benefit of Big Data Healthcare Analytics for patients is the ability to analyze data. For years, medical professionals have collected data, which, in turn, sat idle. Now, with Big Data Healthcare Analytics, providers can analyze historical data about their patients along with data about the population to determine the best course treatments. Coupling robust information systems with Big Data, providers can determine the best course of treatment from the most up-to-date information about the patient and illness.

Additionally, medical providers can arm patients with the most relevant information on preventive care. Federal IT and business executives agree that Big Data Healthcare Analytics will enhance the ability to deliver preventive care including care within the VA system. With millions of Americans facing multiple chronic illnesses, educating patients on how to prevent these diseases is critical to improving patients’ health and keeping costs down within the industry.

How Providers Benefit from Using Big Data

image: flickr.com/photos/AnswergenSengen

image: flickr.com/photos/AnswergenSengen

Patients are not the only beneficiaries of Big Data. Using Big Data Healthcare Analytics is beneficial for providers as well. Primarily, by employing Big Data Analytics, doctors profit. Insurance companies are focusing more on outcomes as an incentive for doctors. Doctors are being paid based on their ability to meet outcomes established by insurance companies. By using data analytics, doctors can use a wealth of information to provide their patients with tailor-made healthcare, which helps them meet the new metrics established by insurance companies.

Doctors can also tap into the information provided from pharmaceutical companies to improve their treatment protocols. Medical professionals who use Big Data Healthcare Analytics streamline the process for making diagnoses, which helps them see more patients throughout the day. For instance, discovering medicines with multiple treatment options help doctors provide patients with the latest in treatment options.

Big Data Improves Population Health

image: freedigitalphotos.net/renjithkrishnan

image: freedigitalphotos.net/renjithkrishnan

From monitoring the spread of Ebola in African nations to sending information about asthmatics to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Big Data is transforming healthcare and improving patient health around the world. Big Data Healthcare Analytics is transforming the medical world as you know it. As more and more medical professionals incorporate its usage, outcomes will improve for patients and costs within the industry will drop. As technology ushers in these improvement, patients will likely see changes throughout the delivery of their medical care that are fueled directly by Big Data Healthcare Analytics.

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