Business Intelligence in healthcare can be better described as a process through which massive amounts of data are gathered and used to pull out actionable insights pertaining to clinical patient information, costs, medicine, and patient behavior. Given the industry’s mission to save people’s lives, it is important for industry leaders to invest in advanced technologies to speed the way healthcare as a service is provided – by reducing expenses, advancing research, and improving patient care.
An overview of business intelligence in healthcare
Gartner defines “business intelligence (BI)” as an “umbrella term” that comprises tools, applications, infrastructure, and best practices enabling information analysis meant to optimize and improve performance and decisions. In healthcare, BI guarantees better clinical performance, which is directly linked to patient health outcomes. Together with big data analytics tools, business intelligence software encourages organizations to adopt a more transparent company culture – improving accountability, diminishing risk and misdiagnosis, and therefore provide patients a better chance at a healthy lifestyle.
Physicians can use BI-based technologies to extract robust insights on the health of their patients, but also to improve data management and operations internally. Health institutions are in dire need of digital transformation. And since most of them still abide by old-fashioned, legacy systems that are time-consuming and prone to errors, BI tools come to the rescue with solutions that can identify underutilized services, generate compliance reporting, monitor cash flow, and more.
Benefits of business intelligence in healthcare
Big data lies at the core of business intelligence solutions in all industries, healthcare included. The digitalization of large amounts of information provided by health institutions has helped federal governments and public institutions provide better clinical trials and more accurate electronic health records. The advent of advanced technology paves the way for precise patient data analyses from multiple sources, like laboratories, hospitals, and private providers, such as insurance companies. As for the benefits of BI in healthcare, the following apply:
Financial planning: intelligent data alerts and automated database systems can enable administrators and financial departments to attain maximum transparency, and thus create an effective financial environment. Healthcare organizations dealing with financial and operational patient care can greatly benefit from business intelligence as such analytics solutions are key to addressing core industry challenges.
Performance evaluation: one of the main benefits of healthcare BI solutions is the ease of tracking activities in health facilities to mitigate operational inefficiencies.
Coordinated communication: efficient coordination via BI analytics can close the communication gap between patients and their physicians. Patient data like medical history and current health state can be reviewed and monitored 24/7 remotely, reducing the amount of time spent placing diagnoses or performing other repetitive tasks.
Improved reputation: hospitals and other health facilities require interactive, responsive, fast, and agile BI software to maximize data value and provide support in critical decision-making processes. As a consequence, healthcare BI is necessary because of its capability to assess information related to patient safety, acquisition, management and more. Used properly, the culture around hospitals can be improved, creating a strong foundation that enables patients to trust they’re in good hands.
BI in healthcare – a viable solution for predicting the future
The increasing popularity of advanced analytics and big data are compelling organizations to switch mindsets and go from “what happened” to “why did it happen” and “how can we prevent it in the future”. Health organizations now have the capability to have better foresight and enable smart management to take proactive, preventive measures when caring for patients or dealing with management issues internally.
Rather than depend on historical patient data, it is now easier than ever to track KPIs (key performance indicators) with business intelligence tools, but also adapt to current patient needs using analytics-based insights. The whole industry relies on data, and step by step healthcare facilities will succeed at implementing modern solutions to increase productivity across all departments and truly become a value-added organization that caters to specific health concerns of each patient individually.