• Harnessing Big Data

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    Big DataWhen discussing which technological innovations will have the greatest impact on health care, “big data” is among the most popular buzz words.

    The potential of big data is great, but turning it into “smart data" is something the industry is still getting acquainted to and is not all that comfortable with yet. With a little time, we can expect this situation to change.

    Further utilization of health care data analytics represents a major resource for health care organizations and government health agencies alike. In fact, one of the most appealing aspects of having access to large swaths of aggregated information is that it can be used to benefit the industry from numerous and diverse perspectives.

    At the research and practical care level, for example, culling insights from information collected over time will help determine the most effective ways to treat patients. An important initiative to jump start this area of work was announced this past November with a project involving two private sector companies and a number of government agencies, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the United Kingdom's National Healthcare Service.

    While the agencies will share non-personal information from their databases, the private sector will design programs that will use that data to do everything from appraise mental health treatments to study demographic health habits. As these programs are refined, the systems can eventually be utilized by hospitals or other types of medical organizations to improve their efficiency and quality of care.

    Meanwhile at the state and federal agency level, big data analytics are being used to help make sense of the massive amounts of health information available. Among the best examples are CNSI’s eCAMS HealthBeat, which is essentially a dashboard that visualizes and analyzes sets of data using a state-of-the-art forecasting engine to output analysis. That analysis can be used to assist health officials to identify red flags where and when they exist and make real-time informed decisions on a variety of issues they might face.

    In some regards, when it comes to big data, we are already there.

    What area of the health care industry has the most to gain by utilizing big data? Tweet @CNSICorp to let us know! Follow CNSI on Twitter.