How Big Data is Affecting Healthcare

Market research shows that the value of the global health care data is expected to be $34.27 billion by 2022, with a compound annual growth rate of 22.07%.

The same study shows that the worth of big data analytics will be approximately $68.03 billion by 2024. This growth will result from the global investments in health care practice management tools and electronic workforce solutions.

The booming big data in healthcare is also as a result of the increased need to introduce more medical products and manage patient care. With the rise of such demands, newer technologies have been adopted in the industry, and thus made significant impacts in the healthcare industry.

Here is everything you need to know about the use of data in healthcare.

What Is Big Data in Healthcare?

This is the process of analyzing large quantities of healthcare data. The data is collected from different sources.

These sources include cost data, clinical data, patient behavior, and sentiment data.  Pharmaceutical and development data is also used as a reliable source.

The essence of big data impact in the healthcare industry is to uncover the profound insights and to improve work efficiency. However, the transformation is still in its early stages, and we are therefore lucky to be alive to experience how far it will go.

Despite the challenges of processing large amounts of data, big data has made a large impact on technological advancement. It has proven to us that any data can be transformed into rich, actionable, and useful information.

The vast volumes of healthcare data have inspired the adoption of big data. Most of the information collected in the health center is very sensitive. Thus, there is a need to come up with a better way of handling it.

Its introduction has also been inspired by government regulations and the desire for more personalized care.

Here are the important impacts of big data:

Reduces Operating Costs

Big data is an ideal way of saving costs in health care facilities. It is particularly good in hospitals that underbook staff members. It’s also beneficial to those who overbook their staff.

With the help of predictive analysis, hospitals can predict admission rates. They can also use it to allocate their staff well. This reduces the investment rate incurred by hospitals and utilizes the small amounts invested.

The insurance industry is also not left behind. Big data helps the insurance industry to reduce its cost of operation and save substantial amounts. It achieves this by backing health workers and wearables.

At the same time, patients are served within the shortest period possible.

Big data allows hospitals to get adequate beds and staff. They are able to cut the expenses by reducing the hospital readmissions rate.

Also, leveraging the rich data sources finds stronger correlations for their patients’ healthcare needs. For instance, healthcare facilities can use historical data to estimate future usage.

By doing so, they get quick access to medical records. They also reduce the operating cost through better forecasting. According to a recent study, at least 47% of healthcare organizations are using predictive analysis.

The study further notes that 57% of the health sectors organizations believe that predictive analytics will reduce the operating cost.

Eliminates Medication Errors

Medication mistakes made by human factors have tremendous results. Each industry aims to be accurate in its daily operations. Yet, the healthcare sector focuses on solving serious issues.

Big data minimizes errors that lead to wrong medications and prescriptions. Fewer errors mean that patients are treated better. MedAware, an Israel startup, is one of the healthcare facilities which have applied this technology.

Improves Security

With cybersecurity being a big menace today, data vulnerability has become a plague. It affects all industries, including the health sector. The data theft brings huge losses, alongside other unimaginable horrors.  

Most frauds are caused by poor control systems that facilitate the hacking process. Eventually, this causes enormous losses for the firm. The cost of repair is more compared to the costs of the preventive measures.

Luckily, the adoption of big data in the health sector enhances security. It stores information in different data centers, each with varying levels of security. This improves privacy measures for the clients’ data.

Moreover, data coming from diverse locations brings more risks. The new technologies can be used for the wrong goals. For that reason, cloud-based solutions which use big data improve the required security for HIPAA compliance.

Improves Customer Experience

All patients deserve excellent customer service. To achieve this, big data provides a robust information system. The information system allows service providers to offer real-time customer service.

Data-centric tools help the customer-facing representatives to improve their services. This is because the information given is more analyzed, informed, and accurate.

A patient’s database makes work easy for the medical records analyst. It also makes it easy for insurance analysts, and all those who use it. As a result, customers receive a personalized experience.

Preventative Care Over the Reactive Care

Today’s healthcare system is reactionary to diseases and sickness. Using big data allows us to be more proactive when maintaining our health. It also prevents us from being reactive to treat diseases.

A perfect example of this is the Pixie Scientific’ smart diapers digital health startup. The startup was started to audit the health of the elderly and small children. The diapers can monitor the possible infections as well as the hydration levels of the wearer.

These innovations assist us in shifting the incentive from the current medical reimbursement.  

Becoming Our Own Doctors

The increased development of healthcare apps has made it possible for us to monitor our health from the comfort of our homes. We no longer need to rely on physician advice or visit the health centers.

The sheer amount of these medical apps has collectively created a highly competitive marketplace. The competition has reduced costs and made the services more efficient.

The main apps are sleep and fitness trackers. However, all health monitors apps aim to have an individual quantified health platform.

Yesterday- the sensors introduced the idea of recording and measuring our signals. It also introduced the general statistics.

Today– the sensors have integrated our individual signals. We can now access and also share our data

Tomorrow– the same sensors will enable us to aggregate and gather our collective health data. The sensors will also extrapolate the data to actionable interpretations.

The digital health technology has also made it possible for us to track the spread of diseases. It has also allowed us to investigate where they originated from. The Ebola-info sharing mobile app is an ideal example of these apps. Apps allow us to develop and have actionable responses.

When there is an Ebola outbreak, the apps management analyzes text messages and phone calls. They use the information for updates and information on the local and national scales.

One main benefit of medical apps is that they are informational. They provide general information on how to remain healthy, even when one is not ill.

Better Treatment

Big data improves the accuracy of medical results. Moreover, the algorithms deliver personalized treatment by relying on past information.

The personalization is done by matching an individual’s genetic makeup. It is later developed according to lifestyle and environment.  

Besides, the patients’ details are not treated in isolation. Similar cases are treated as a group. This helps to create regular patterns and come up with better treatment measures.

IBM and Apple have developed a big data platform to explore new insights. The primary aim of the platform is to ensure that busy people get a professional consultation. Due to their busy schedules, the platform allows them to get services at home.

The information will be captured through smart devices and computers. The digital devices will allow patients to keep in touch with their doctors. They can also set an automated reminder when they want to take medicines.

Clinical trials

Big data plays a significant role in modernizing clinical trials methods. It is mostly applied when picking the suitable candidates for the trials. As such, the desired trials are sorted out from the rest.

In clinical trials, the medication effects are chosen using big data. Areas which have a higher likelihood of being affected are also chosen with big data. Big data has been exceedingly helpful in finding out the cure for cancer.

Bottom Line

Big data in healthcare has been highly beneficial in the past. It also seems promising for the future. It has become a crucial element to success, with almost all modern organizations adopting it.

Hopefully, it will outweigh the challenging aspects and become a reliable network for the global healthcare industr.y

Is your institution ready for a revolution? What are your plans a far as the big data analytics are concerned? We would love to hear from you.

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