What is Health Care Data Management?
Health care data management is the compilation of patient data from multiple sources across providers and organizations. It allows health care providers to enter patient information into a singular database where it can be securely stored, analyzed and shared.
It builds a holistic view of patients that simplifies care and lowers costs. This holistic view allows providers to:
Improve communications with patients and colleagues
Synchronized data hubs simplify outgoing communication and allow for more readily shared information. This makes it easier for caretakers to keep patients and colleagues informed.
Improve patient outcomes
The abundance of information being stored and the use of predictive modeling has changed the way health care professionals diagnose and treat patients.
Take preventive measures
Predictive modeling can alert health care professionals to potential outcomes and allow for preventive measures to be taken.
Having access to the entirety of a patient’s medical history simplifies the diagnostic process for clinicians.
Make more informed decisions
Holistic views of patient information can provide a more complete patient profile and better track patient populations. The data supports decision making by ensuring all information is provided.
Managing Data in Health Care
The collection of data serves not only doctors, but patients, insurance providers and many others serving in the health care industry. The idea of collecting patient data is as old as medical care itself. Doctors and nurses wrote in their journals, updated patient charts, took notes, and documented their processes. That information is now all digital, which creates a data set that is easier to access and share.
A lot of information is being collected from patients these days. Without proper data management, no one would be able to access or decipher the information they need to properly treat their patients. So, we use things like Electronic Health Records to improve patient care and health care customer relationship management systems to improve patient relationships.
Electronic Health Records (EHR)
EHRs compile data from multiple sources into one central hub for a comprehensive view of patient history.
EHRs provide patient documentation in a digital format thus allowing providers to record and store patient information in a centralized location and securely share that information with other caregivers.
You are providing information every time you visit a doctor or specialist. Each time you speak to a health care professional, that interaction is being documented. You’ve seen health care providers enter the information into their tablet or mobile medical carts (it is hard to miss the large cart they wheel with them from room to room). That information feeds into an EHR.
Benefits of EHR
It is difficult to diagnose and provide treatment without the whole story. EHRs provide that story. The records needed by health care professionals are available whenever and wherever they require them thanks to the data stored in EHRs.
EHRs improve patient care which leads to better diagnostics, better patient outcomes and cost savings for both patient and provider.
Health Care Customer Relationship Management (HCRM) Systems
HCRMs compile data from multiple sources into one central hub for a comprehensive view into patient activity.
Health care CRMs are built to manage and maintain patient relationships. They create a system that allows for better interaction and therefore better patient participation. Better patient participation leads to better patient outcomes.
The health care data stored in HCRMs is pulled from multiple sources including patient demographics, financial data and clinical data. This information is compiled to provide a complete customer profile; patient habits, patient lifecycle, behaviors and preferences can be determined from this data and used to personalize communication.
Benefits of HCRMs
Patient care is nearly impossible without patient cooperation. CRMs track customer communications and analyze data to provide a clearer view of preferences and behaviors. With personalized communication, it promotes customer interaction. This increases engagement and reduces no-shows which lowers costs.
HCRMs do more than just communicate, though. They can analyze data and deliver actionable insights as well as segment patient populations. Providers get a complete customer profile. Where EHRs focus entirely on patient care, HCRMs also serve the business side of health care.
Predictive Modeling Can Shape the Future of Health Care
Predictive modeling is the process of predicting future outcomes based on patterns in historical data. The potential for use of predictive modeling in health care is endless. The more data collected, the easier it is to estimate the likelihood of an outbreak, or potential for risk to a patient.
It can be used to track and predict health trends. It can make predictions about patient outcomes and predispositions. Health care professionals, financial and administrative staff can all make more informed decisions with the data provided from these models.
Time and money will be saved. Patient outcomes will improve. And the health care industry will run more efficiently at a lower cost.
Without data management, predictive modeling is an impossibility. With it, organizations can develop risk scores more accurately, health care professionals can improve disease diagnostics and treatment, providers can cut wait times and lower costs.
The future of health care is in the data. The more data collected, the more the predictive models can improve. The more they improve, the better care can be provided.
Health Care Data Management Leads to Improved Patient Care
Better data leads to better care. The immediate access to information wherever it is needed allows for faster response and more effective treatment. Health care teams are able to coordinate better thanks to centralized data sets. Patients are benefiting from this data management.
Medical histories are now well documented and more complete with the use of EHRs. Health care data management provides convenience to both patient and provider. With more complete documentation for health care professionals, patients benefit from lower wait times, faster diagnoses, more efficient treatment, easier billing and insurance claims and better communication overall.
Data Management Reduces Costs
With more data available and the use of predictive modeling, health care professionals are equipped to be more proactive. Actionable insights make it easier to prevent readmissions, diagnose chronic conditions earlier, optimize treatments and improve care coordination.
Health care providers can operate at a lower cost thanks to the information provided by the data being gathered. Lower costs for health care providers should result in lower costs for patients.
It is no secret how expensive health care can be. The more we can do to lower costs, the more people will have access to life-saving medical care.
Your Career in Health Data Management
Health informatics is a growing field. While there are entry-level positions available that don’t require a degree, those who acquire a bachelor’s or master’s degree in the field have room for infinite growth.
The University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS) provides an Online Master of Science in Health Informatics (MSHI). If you’re looking to build or begin your career in Health Data Management, Pitt is the place to start. Our MSHI program, which is delivered online, is available to qualified candidates anywhere.
It doesn’t matter where you are in your career; Pitt’s MSHI program is home to doctors, nurses, IT professionals, even those new to health care. If you’re interested in a career in Health Informatics, you can learn more about the MSHI program here.