BI: tech with multitude of uses

With the explosion of data in the healthcare industry, bI has evolved to allow the extraction of useful information from some of the available data for clinical, financial, and operational purposes.

When looking at the potential uses for a system under the BI umbrella, there seems to be virtually nothing they can’t do as they collect, massage and deliver data for clinical, financial, administrative and operational purposes as well as for payer negotiations.

“The potential for BI is nearly limitless,” said Susan Merrill, Wayne, Pa.-based clinical epidemiologist for ICW. “It provides the ability to identify patterns to the most minute levels, ascertain risks with enough time to intervene, conduct precise and more holistic analysis as more data sources are able to be integrated.”

With the explosion of data in the healthcare industry, BI has evolved to allow the extraction of useful information from some of the available data for clinical, financial, and operational purposes, Merrill said.

For clinical purposes, “BI may allow us to truly predict patients who are at risk for developing disease or worsening conditions by the smallest degree, conduct population and care management at a more granular level with more appropriate care pathways, link costs more specifically to treatments and programs, and perform comparative effectiveness studies within and across healthcare entities. Eventually, business intelligence will provide a means to better understand genomic information, particularly in combination with clinical data.”

Indeed, the BI system specializes in all types of data and delivers it to wherever it is needed, says Caleb Decker, vice president for healthcare solutions for Vienna, Va.-based MicroStrategy.

“It starts with mobility – accessing information anywhere and anytime,” he said. “Mobility is most important and is very exciting. We have customers who use BI for web-based reporting and have migrated to mobile devices. It is an incredible boost for access to information when they are out in the field.”

Physicians are big users of iPads and similar devices, and are clamoring for more functions and options, Decker said.

“They want more apps and access to medical record systems and we’re seeing that happen,” he said. “Where we have a bright future is in ACO model. It is where healthcare is going and is an opportunity for the physician to have a series of patient panels on their devices so they can see where the gaps in care are. Mobility is not just a cool thing, but it helps the system with the transparency of data and ultimately to deliver better care.”

Nashville, Tenn-based Parallon Business Solutions has been partnering with MicroStrategy on its new revenue cycle management solution and CIO Nicole Tremblett promises it will raise the BI bar a few notches.

“Data is power and the faster we can get info into the hands of decision-makers the better off the industry is,” she said. “Instead of being reactive, they can be proactive to manage their operations.”

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