As we continue our discussion on predictive analytics in healthcare, if you haven’t read it yet, I want to invite you to first check out my previous post on How Predictive Analytics is Changing Healthcare. It’s a solid primer for today’s discussion and chalked full of great information.
Today, I want to take a look at some unique ways that we can leverage an existing tool to improve patient care. Often in healthcare innovation, we’re looking to the latest and greatest invention, which is completely fine. However, sometimes, it’s wise to step back and take a deeper look at what we already have in our arsenal to see how we can better leverage those resources.
The Primary Power of an EMR
We all already know that EMRs are the technical backbone of our operations. They help to drive decisions on logistics, improve efficiencies, and deliver a better overall patient experience. But what often gets overlooked is the massive amounts of meaningful data these software solutions are already collecting that isn’t getting utilized. By tapping into what’s already there, we can get so much more out of our existing system.
Asking the Real Questions
The obvious next question is ‘what can my EMR do for me, my patients, and my staff that it isn’t already doing?’ And the question I’d pose in response is, ‘What do you want it to be able to do?’ I’m not trying to be annoying or insinuate that an EMR can do everything under the sun. What I’m trying to do is get you to consider taking a different approach to the situation.
Start with the problem first. Ask questions to figure out what would solve your real problems. When you instead start with the data first, there’s a risky pitfall of creating predictive algorithms and ‘solutions’ that sound fancy and look great on paper but don’t really do you much good. When you start with a deep understanding of the real problem (make sure you get input from your staff), you approach the data completely different.
Here are a few questions to ask your team to get started:
To help you better answer the previous questions, I did want to share a few real-world examples of how healthcare organizations are pairing their existing EMR systems with predictive analytic solutions to see real gains in patient care and the overall patient experience. Remember, though, your organization is unique, so really take the time to decide what your unique needs are. They may coincide with some of these examples, or they may be completely different. Both outcomes are okay.
All of these things and a lot more are already possible as long as you’re using a quality EMR system. And each one of these alone has the potential to dramatically improve the quality of patient care.
If you’re enjoying these discussions, I’d invite you to follow this account as we’re going to continue our journey through discussing the ins and outs of predictive analytics in healthcare over the coming weeks and months.
From Data to Healthcare Insights: a Net Health Series
Also, be sure to check out an ongoing webinar series on analytics, in which we interview experts such as Dr. Bill Winkenwerder, former Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs for the U.S. Department of Defense, among others.
How Predictive Analytics is Revolutionizing Healthcare
The Expanding Role of Artificial Intelligence for Clinical and Operational Decision-Making