Healthcare has come a long way from giving a reactive response to standard, isolated incidents through subjective decision making. We have moved to a better form of care that functions on available personal information and medical history of a patient. This better form draws its efficacy from a very important variable – clinical data analysis. Although hospitals have figured operational and financial data in their working for decades, the use of universally usable clinical data to make more informed care choices is relatively new. Generally, this clinical data contains information about patients, such as diagnosis, treatments administered, medicines prescribed, procedures and lab tests conducted, and hospitalizations.

Generally, clinical data is driven by a variety of sources, including electronic health records, disease registries, patient surveys, and information exchanges among care providers. Effective analytics make this highly exhaustible data more useful and well aligned with the requirements of people who require actionable medical history for a patient. Here are 3 ways clinical data analytics is making healthcare better and reducing care costs.

1)  Clinical data analytics encourage preventive care over reactive care – reactive healthcare is costlier than preventive healthcare, and the existing trend shows that people tend to seek healthcare when there is a problem. Through clinical data analytics, preventive care can be practically implemented. With preventive care, hospitals can keep patients out of the costly emergency room care and reduce their healthcare costs. Predictive modeling, a part of clinical data analytics, is used by caregivers to determine the risk percentage to an individual’s health. Through these numbers, analytics can guide caregivers to provide precautionary care that can help cull the problem before it acutely infests the patient.

2)  Clinical data analytics provide evidence based treatment to patients – With more and more patients relying on electronic health records for sharing their information with caregivers, hospitals are now more equipped to make better care decisions for patients. Through relevant historical information about patients and their medical past, caregivers can mitigate the risk of post operation problems, such as surgical site infections, poor physical function, reaction to medicines and allergies. Traditionally, such problems have created unforeseen financial burden for hospitals and caregivers through unreimbursed costs, and have hampered patient satisfaction post operations. With clinical data analytics, such instances can be reduced to decrease costs and increase satisfaction.

3)  Clinical data analytics enable personalized care – Patients have frequently suffered the vicious cycle of changing doctors and getting stuck with the same set of tests, questions, and procedures over and over again. Usually, this type of care wastes time, money and effort, and does not bring any drastic improvement in patient’s health condition. With analytics, patients can drive a personalized care through an acute analysis of their clinical data that can bring suggestions for preventive care and wellness measures. Through the available data, doctors can generate a rounded view of the patient’s health and can drive better diagnosis and timely treatment. Other than reducing recurring costs of follow up care and hospital resources, caregivers can hope to provide a better care experience to patients by this personalization.  This personalization also improves chronic disease management programs for several patients. Through a better insight into patient history, caregivers are able to improve the efficacy of chronic disease management programs, such as how to administer self-care and how & when to take your medications.

Collectively, clinical data analytics can move the healthcare industry from a subjective, case by case approach to an objective, quantified approach that enables doctors to make better informed decisions. Through this objectivity, caregivers can reduce costs by reducing readmissions, emergency department visits, and wait times. Needless to say, the detailed insight through clinical data breakdown not only drives business by improving clinical outcomes but also affects higher patient satisfaction and improved care. Hospitals and caregivers have already begun investing in clinical data to provide better, well rounded care to their patients. As these hospitals improve healthcare by reducing costs, eliminating readmissions, and raising patient satisfaction, the industry will gather enough momentum to make a huge push for inculcating clinical data analytics in their base strategy.

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