Analytics in Healthcare

August 31st, 2013
Contributing Editor: Peter Kelly

“Sick and tired” and “More of the same” come to mind when I think about the never-ending promises of healthcare reform. However, a radically new idea has emerged – that data holds THE answer; the answer to:

Restoring Trust. Empowering the subject of healthcare – the client, and ensuring adherence to the professional ethic, that thou shalt do no harm
Management. Reducing costs, improving accountability – by getting it right, from prevention to rehabilitation
Engagement. Personalising healthcare, thereby elevating the relevance of relationships in health “care” and putting technology where it belongs – in the background.

This newsletter assembled by the Alberta Council of Technologies, portrays analytics and the dara scientist as transformative, as aides – not alternatives, to the healthcare provider and as kickstarting the development of “evidence-based” apps for improved decision making in healthcare – quick and easy, safe and secure.
– Perry Kinkaide MSc, PhD, CMC
Chair: Analytics, Big Data, and The Cloud Conferences – 2012 and 2013

Analytics in managing healthcare

The New World of Healthcare Analytics. We live in a data-driven world, where streams of numbers, text, images and voice data are collected through numerous sources – accessible and moved at the speed of light. Analytics can transform this data into meaningful alerts, decision support and process improvements, for dramatically improving the success of a healthcare organization. When analytics are applied effectively, healthcare organizations can better coordinate decisions, extract and present key clinical information and respond to an evolving situation in real time. They can better use their resources, save more lives, contain costs, improve their services and performance levels and even reduce their environmental impact.

Healthcare Analytics Market to Reach 108-Billiion by 2017. Healthcare payers as well as the providers are leading the users of healthcare analytics for a range of functions from suggesting the most accurate diagnoses, cost reduction, fraud prevention, revenue generation, service improvement to real-time view of the business. The major driver for business analytics is the return on Investments (ROI), with a median of five years, from 10.0% to 1,000.0%.

Analytics-Driven Healthcare: Improving Care, Compliance and Cost. In the face of skyrocketing costs, the healthcare industry is addressing inefficiencies by improving data sharing and collaboration across the industry value chain and applying analytics to improve operations and patient outcomes.

Analytics as an investment priority

Advanced analytics is the top investment priority – half of IDC’s surveyed healthcare providers and payers say analytics is their top investment priority..

Analytics as a physician’s aide

The 10 things IBM is Teaching the World – IBM’s Watson has been designed to assist physician’s in diagnosing and treating patients by querying the system. The doctor enters in symptoms and other related factors, Watson then mines the patient data to find relevant facts about family history, current medications and other existing conditions. It combines this information with current findings from tests and instruments and then examines all available data sources to form hypotheses and test them. Watson can incorporate treatment guidelines, electronic medical record data, doctor’s and nurse’s notes, research, clinical studies, journal articles, and patient information into the data available for analysis.

Analytics in preventative care

Number, Numbers, and More Numbers. Insurers have been crunching numbers for years to figure out which patients are most likely to generate high costs. Now other groups are gauging probabilities of relapses, and the likelihood of a patient’s not taking his or her medicine. Using models that draw on massive troves of medical and other data, some are also focusing on seemingly healthy individuals, trying to prevent problems before they occur.

Analytics in personalizing healthcare

How Data Science Is Transforming Healthcare. An exploratiom of how data analysis will help structure the business of healthcare more effectively around outcomes, and how it will transform the practice of medicine by personalizing for each specific patient.”Data Science is not optional in healthcare reform; it is the linchpin of the whole process.”

Scandu Scout – the World’s First Tricorder. In order for people to take a more active role in their health, they need to not only have the data, but know what the data means and how to act on it – a consumer, rather than clinical, pathway to medicine. The Scanadu Scout™ incorporates algorithms, for analyzing measurements’ data and interpreting them. ALSO The Scandu Broke Indigogo’s Crowdfunding Record. $100,000 was raised in less than two hours and doubled it in five. The next phase of Scanadu Scout’s production is to develop the educational component of the device.


Top 10 Game Changers in Hospital IT Healthcare Healthcare is always changing. Information technology is always changing. Put them together in today’s acute care setting, and you have a prescription for change on an extraordinary level. Listed below are the top 10 healthcare IT game changers that affect all stakeholders — patients, clinicians and hospital IT departments. They represent both opportunity and challenges, depending on your point of view. Dealing with these concepts — indeed embracing these concepts — is not just a good idea, it is an absolute necessity.

TBR’s SourceIT Healthcare Report – provides business insight into the IT investments healthcare organizations are planning for meeting government requirements and improving operational efficiency. Healthcare IT in North America is at a crossroads as mandates, business pressure, new technologies, big data and consumerization buffets payers and provider alike. The Report helps IT vendors understand how these forces are shaping $34.5 billion in IT spend, where those dollars are going and who authorizes the budgets.”


“Disruption” – Silicon Valley’s Worst Buzzword. Sometimes buzzwords become so pervasive they’re almost inaudible, which is when we need to start listening to them. “Disruptive” is like that. It floats in the ether at ideas festivals and TED talks; it vanishes into the jargon cluttering the pages of Forbes and Harvard Business Review. There’s a quarterly called Disruptive Science and Technology; a Disruptive Health Technology Institute opened this summer. Disruptive doesn’t mean what it used to, of course. It’s no longer the adjective you hope not to hear in parent-teacher conferences. It’s what you want investors to say about your new social-media app. If it’s disruptive, it’s also innovative and transformational.1 We can’t often name the person who released a cliché into the linguistic ecosystem, but in this case we can, and we also know why he did it. He’s Clayton Christensen, a Harvard Business School professor, and he wanted to explain why upstart enterprises drive better-established companies out of business. In his 1997 book, The Innovator’s Dilemma, Christensen launched the phrase that has transmogrified the English language: “disruptive innovation.”

John Sculley on the Consumer Revolution in Healthcare. When Steve Jobs recruited John Sculley to join Apple 30 years ago, he became the first big brand consumer marketer to head a Silicon Valley company. Jobs knew that the PC would eventually become a consumer product and would need the same marketing prowess as other household brands. Thirty years later, and healthcare has missed both the PC revolution and the Internet revolution. But John Sculley won’t let healthcare miss the new era of consumer-centric wellness and health. He believes that disruptive innovation in this space will be about connecting the dots between high tech, healthcare, and consumer branding.


Vincent Granville’s blog – How to eliminate a trillion dollars in healthcare costs. Over a five year period, based on better analytics, and where everybody wins – except current suppliers.


“The Leading Edge of Healthcare & Robotics” is the Calgary Council for Advanced Technology (CCAT) first networking event of Fall 2013 by Nathan Armstrong – Design Engineer & Leader of Multiple Industry Groups. Examining the latest innovations in robotics and how they might affect personal healthcare in the near future. Will the future of healthcare look similar to today, or will robots drastically change the face of the medical industry? Exploring the trends and upcoming technologies – an in-depth look at what the future might hold. Learn more about healthcare tech trends and network with local business and tech professionals.Wednesday September 11, 2013. Alberta Innovates Technology Futures (AITF) – 3608 – 33 St NW, Calgary Register: or contact or phone 403-282-4759


Certified Health Data Analyst (CHDA®) Individuals who earn the CHDA designation will achieve recognition of their expertise in health data analysis and validation of their mastery of this domain. This prestigious certification provides practitioners with the knowledge to acquire, manage, analyze, interpret, and transform data into accurate, consistent, and timely information, while balancing the “big picture” strategic vision with day-to-day details. CHDA-credentialed professionals exhibit broad organizational knowledge and the ability to communicate with individuals and groups at multiple levels, both internal and external.

Teenage Cancer Innovators. Some teenagers spend their free time playing video games. Others dedicate their after-school hours to a job, scooping ice cream or taking movie tickets. Still others play a sport, or are star members of a debate team. And still others spend their free time in a lab, working on ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer.


Troy Media has assembled Alberta’s Analytics Industry magazine for ABCtech with a dozen original articles citing the broad impact of analytics including a directory of over 100 Made-in-Alberta analytics companies. Please contact for sponsor opportunities.

Visit for an exclusive viewing of several analytics and healthcare related presentations videos at ABCtech’s Analytics, Big Data, and The Cloud Conferences held in Edmonton in 2012 and conducted simultaneously in both Edmonton and Calgary this past May 2013.

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