"Big" data drives business decisions in virtually every industry, but healthcare has a seemingly endless list of metrics that can mean very little to the big picture until there is some rigor around the analysis and the presentation of that data.
Among other things, industry analysts can use this data to help providers predict market trends, improve the patient experience, optimize their service mix and improve clinical quality, business outcomes and employee and physician engagement. Recent improvements in the areas of data collection, reporting and healthcare reporting analytics mean that healthcare leaders now have real-time or nearly real-time data for many of the metrics that are crucial in clinical and business decisions. Virtually every healthcare encounter can be made safer, more efficient or simply a better experience for patients, physicians and employees, when we harness the power of all of these metrics.
Big data can yield big insights, but only if the data can be visualized in such a way that it is usable for leaders. In the not-so-distant past, a massive spreadsheet that included an amalgam of measures from every discipline in the organization may have served as the dashboard that leaders would use to measure progress and make decisions. This was usually a frustrating and cumbersome process and did not come close to really harnessing the decision-making power of the organization's own data.
Now, interactive dashboards mean that it is possible to take a birds-eye view of the organization while preserving the ability to drill down to specific areas of interest. The data should be able to tell a story about the organization that also allows for deeper analysis. It should be able to identify areas that are not executing on the must-haves. It also should be optimized for all leaders so that the CEO can quickly and easily get an overview for the entire organization and department managers can also use the same tool to drill down to department-specific data. Data can also be presented alongside organizational goals to help leaders focus on progress and performance – an important insight in the age of value-based purchasing.
More rigor around healthcare analytics and more robust tools for reporting the data are perhaps the natural outcomes of the continued move towards value-based purchasing. It is only prudent to keep your eye on the numerous metrics that are now driving reimbursement.
Harnessing the power of your organization's enormous data set can really provide focus on improvement in the areas that have been keeping healthcare leaders up at night.
HealthStream can work with your organization to address your healthcare analytics needs.
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