With the world becoming increasingly data-driven, data analytics has become a hot topic of discussion worldwide. The healthcare industry is also at the forefront in harnessing it to gain insights for improving – operations, patient care, efficiency, and reducing costs.
The healthcare sector produces vast amounts of data on a daily basis for various purposes. These data, when aggregated and analyzed, help unlock valuable insights that aren’t otherwise evident. However, converting raw data into actionable intelligence requires advanced healthcare data analytics techniques.
This process involves collecting, processing, and analyzing large sets of raw data compliantly to identify patterns and relationships and draw insights for improving decision-making and optimizing operations. Healthcare Analytics uses historical and current data to apply at the macro and micro levels.
At the macro level, it can be used to analyze population health trends, identify disease outbreaks, and evaluate the effectiveness of public health interventions. While at the micro level, it can support individual patient care decisions, such as predicting patient risk, identifying potential drug interactions, and monitoring patient outcomes.
Types of Healthcare Analytics:
Data analytics in healthcare can be categorized into four types.
- Descriptive analytics:This analytic type examines the positivity rate in a specific population to determine a virus’s contagion level.
- Diagnostic analytics: It analyzes the symptoms of patients to diagnose a particular disease or injury.
- Predictive analytics:This type is used to predict the outspread of seasonal diseases by scrutinizing the data from previous years.
- Prescriptive analytics:It is used to evaluate patients’ pre-existing conditions, assess their risk for developing future complications, and suggest preventive treatment plans based on the risk assessment.
Applications of Data Analytics in Healthcare
Predict and suggest ways to improve staffing
Data analytics can be utilized to predict staffing requirements accurately, which is critical in hospitals and clinics. Staffing decisions based on this data can avoid increased labor costs and provide quality patient care. It can also be used to anticipate patient levels during different hours of the day so that resources can be allocated accordingly for enhanced patient care.
EHR (Electronic Health Records) analysis
This advanced technology can be used to trace and record patients’ medical history, including their health conditions, allergies, symptoms, and treatment plans they followed to avoid redundant tests.
Use big data to prevent the onset of advanced diseases
Healthcare data analysis of patients provides a healthcare professional (HCP) with a thorough insight into patients’ health conditions, helping him determine at what level their disease has progressed. By filtering details such as symptoms, medications, tests, hospital visits, and trends, the HCP can offer preventive care to patients and reduce hospital readmission.
Detecting and preventing data fraud
Data breaches in healthcare are a growing concern for healthcare organizations (HCOs). Any compromise on patient records can prove detrimental to HCOs reputation. However, data analytics software deployed at these institutes can identify any fluctuations in website traffic and suspicious activities beforehand and prevent potential fraud.
Advancing drug development
It enables clinicians to refer to current and historical data and apply predictive and data visualization techniques to gauge the efficacy of clinical trials. This helps to drive innovation, streamline processes, and expedite the development of new drugs and therapies.
The Analytical Data can forecast trends in the disease outbreak, allowing local administrations to prepare adequately. Health centers use the analytical data to predict the outbreak and severity of the seasonal flu.
Potential Future of Data Analytics in Healthcare
Data analytics has a promising future in healthcare, especially given the impact COVID-19 has had on our lives. Healthcare organizations increasingly relied on analytical data to manage the pandemic and provide better patient care. Moreover, as the need for quality healthcare persists, the demand for data analytics in the healthcare industry will continue to rise, making healthcare data analyst a highly sought-after role.