Data-Driven Healthcare: Paradigms and Beyond

Jan 31, 2022
Life Sciences | 4 min READ
This article was originally published in Express Healthcare India  - Source link
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In this Expert Insights Article, the author talks about data driven healthcare delivery and highlights the top trends in healthcare sector in 2022.
Dr. Sharada Rao
Dr. Sharada Rao

Former Vertical Head - Delivery

Life Sciences


The healthcare industry and data are inextricably linked since a decade now. Electronic Health Records (EHR) data, hospital MIS, patient information, pharma discovery, and all other inter-related systems formulate an everlasting and ubiquitous ecosystem that sustains the progress and development of medicine.
Over the past decade, organizations have acquired the latest technologies to support their patients virtually and provide real-life expertise. Remote sensors, diagnostic machines with connected devices, patient-physician portals, healthcare applications and health cloud platforms gather volumes of healthcare data that organizations can use for various purposes. Thus, big data analytics in healthcare is essential for the industry.
Data-Driven Healthcare: Paradigms and Beyond
A Prescription for Care Delivery Players
In the post-2020 world, rapid digitization, and an explosion of digital transformation within the healthcare ecosystem have left care delivery players with a rich field of data that lies mostly untapped.
This includes data that is locked away within ecosystems or patient data like Electronic Health Records (EHR) that cannot be freely shared due to data privacy regulations which bring costly implications on instances of slippage.
Added to these factors is a rising enthusiasm for wearables and the willingness to share health data with trusted players in exchange for sophisticated emergency care services. In the above-mentioned world, the healthcare ecosystem is set to win as care providers, wearable manufacturers, drug manufacturers, and distribution and logistics providers partner together to unleash the value of data-driven insights.
Here are three trends that are shaping up new paradigms of care delivery powered by data-driven insights:
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Decoding the Facets of Data-driven Healthcare
Trend #1: Patient data maturity brings business benefits
Currently, the patient data landscape stands largely fragmented. EHRs contain multiple fields of mostly unstructured data, and the industry is only beginning to move towards standardization. However, as patient data matures, many players are experimenting with a complete digitization of patient records and synchronizing diagnostics functions with doctor-patient interfaces and other administrative tasks within user-oriented platforms.
While such transformations bring big business benefits to care providers, the complete extent of patient data will be realized as standardization and data quality improvements empower an era of the fully paperless patient experience. Moreover, because the pandemic has helped patients and doctors find comfort in video consultations, the healthcare infrastructure will shape up for specialized procedures and diagnoses, while routine visits and preliminary consultations will go remote and contactless.
Data-Driven Healthcare: Paradigms and Beyond
Trend #2: Data-driven healthcare empowers care of the patient
Data is a key catalyst in powering the personalization of the patient experience - that personalization is also the key to navigating pricing pressures profitably and improving the quality of care for the patient.
For instance, patient data replete with medical histories, and genetic and demographic data is already being leveraged to create custom drugs that bring higher effectiveness while dodging unique conditions that afflict patients with complicated conditions.
As regulations enforce value-based care delivery paradigms, such data is vital to sharing risks and finding shareable profits with other players in the value chain - such as pharmaceutical companies and health insurers.
Finally, unification of patient data within big data platforms is also enabling care providers to bring a complete and exhaustive picture of their patients to the doctors, and AI-powered prescription rule checkers that scan for interactions, efficacy, and effectiveness of treatment plans for each patient.
Data-Driven Healthcare: Paradigms and Beyond
Trend #3: Care provision orchestration goes nimble
Currently, the healthcare ecosystem employs a massive workforce to orchestrate care delivery. While this is a positive factor for economic growth, the limits, and drawbacks of strong reliance on healthcare workers were realized for the better during the pandemic. With data-driven care provision, the healthcare machinery can be made nimbler, relying on fewer links in between. For instance, hospital administration, assignment of specialty practitioners to cases, patient registration, creation of diagnostic results, and treatment quality and success rate measurement can be abstracted within platforms powered by data.
IoT-originated data has shown promise in healthcare administration functions like scheduling patient visits, maintaining sanitization standards, equipment utility tracking, and predictive maintenance of expensive equipment. However, front-facing functions remain largely human-driven. Application interfaces powered by AI algorithms and pluggable data sources will be instrumental in the digitization of front-facing functions, thereby making healthcare provision nimbler, and consequently, cost-effective, and profitable.
Data-Driven Healthcare: Paradigms and Beyond
What Next?
One thing to note here is that data-driven healthcare is yet to permeate today’s rapidly digitizing world. Data privacy considerations and underlying regulations are critical determinants of how rapidly the trends will unfold.
Collaborations with ecosystem partners and the use of privacy-preserving mechanisms like trusted intermediary establishments, redaction techniques, edge processing, and PII masking are already opening new possibilities.
The healthcare ecosystem has much to look forward to - in a data-driven world, new benchmarks of profitability and patient experience will be set, and cost centers such as compliance and administration will emerge as sources of competitive advantage. New paradigms will rewrite age-old ones, and a paperless, AI-powered, healthcare will yet again, reinstate the industry to its glory, will yet again, reinstate the industry to its glory.
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