Providence Health & Services expands data platform deployment

Will help 32 hospitals in five states make smarter use of clinical and financial data
By Mike Miliard
10:42 AM

Providence Health & Services, the not-for profit Catholic health system, plans to expand its roll-out, across its 32-hospitals, of a data warehouse platform and analytic technology from Salt Lake City-based Health Catalyst.

With more than 64,000 employees and 3,000 employed physicians serving communities in Alaska, California, Montana, Oregon and Washington, Providence is expanding the deployment in hopes of further driving down costs and improving clinical outcomes.

"Hospitals have immense amounts of complex data in separate applications that they need to rapidly transform into clinical and financial insights, and we are pleased to have helped Providence achieve that goal," said Health Catalyst CEO Dan Burton in a press statement. "With this latest expansion, we're excited to help decision makers across more clinical areas within the Providence network more quickly identify problem areas, prioritize needed changes, and develop evidence-based metrics and goals to transform and improve patient care."

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The data warehouse platform normalizes disparate data sources and enables rich meta data management that facilitates data access, discovery, analysis and reporting, say Health Catalyst officials. Unlike other electronic data warehouse technologies, this platform employs so-called late-binding bus architecture, which delays making dramatic changes to the data drawn from source applications, such as Providence's Epic EHR, until clinicians have had time to review it and form hypotheses.

This approach is faster and more agile than traditional "early-binding" EDWs, officials say. It also addresses the need for clinical analysis of near-real time information to track and improve care for whole populations of patients. 

"Providence's ability to engage with new ideas and new methodologies has been critical to helping the health system transform to the changing needs in healthcare while continuing to provide the most advanced and cost-effective care," said Dale Sanders, senior vice president of Health Catalyst, in a statement.

"The transition from fee-for-service medicine to accountable care is creating challenges for providers who need agile and actionable analytics tools to optimize their operations, maintain profitability and stay competitive," said IDC Health Insights Research Director Judy Hanover recently, in the wake of an IDC report that explored Health Catalyst's data architecture.

"Analytics tools that help providers understand and control operating costs and clinical waste now, while preparing for future care management and accountable care programs, are among the more effective tools in this rapidly changing and evolving market," she added.

[See also: Data analytics poised for big growth]


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