Today, the massive volume and complexities of health care data generated from disparate unconnected, systems require sophisticated information technologies for storing, aggregation, and analyses. Despite the corresponding increase in the use of computers to capture, store, and retrieve the information to meet these requirements, a great deal of complexity exists in the process of the actual collection, and the goal of reusing the data for multiple purposes often remains elusive. Data-driven healthcare decision-making is possible only when individuals have the analytic tools and appropriate view of information to determine the most effective paths to choose.
Those who work with data tend to think in structured, linear terms. Healthcare data are not that way. It is both diverse and complex, making linear analysis ineffective. Various challenges, issues, and application areas that impact utilization include
- disparate sources,
- disparate formats,
- disparate quality,
- data management, and
- rights and access.
This body of knowledge presents an approach to bridge the discussions between the CXO suite who are seeking answers to key strategic questions and the practical application of understanding the sources and types of data needed.
Providing more than a hope and promise, this structured process is intended to answer the important questions that impact your business and providing a list (see APPENDIX A) of public data sources you may want to consider and use case exemplars (see APPENDIX B) that demonstrate strategic vision through practical application.