New Smartphone Sensors Can Aid Healthcare & Generate All Important Data

Thanks to technology that includes smart meters and home area networks, a huge amount of data is being generated on a daily basis.  In fact, research from McKinsey discovered that an average business with over 1000 employees has already stored more data than the information contained in the Library of Congress (which coincidentally contains twenty-five terabytes of information). Moreover, the volume of stored information is expected to increase forty-four times by 2020 – according to reports from IDC.

 

Within the healthcare realm, one of the areas that will generate a significant amount of information in the future is the use of sensors.  Why sensors?  Well, many times doctors are unable to get necessary data from patients.  For instance, many patients become lax when it comes to recording their blood pressure readings and/or glucose readings on a regular basis.

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Smartphone-Based Medical Sensors

In a comparatively short time period, smartphones have become extremely popular among consumers of all ages around the world. As smartphones and related technology becomes increasingly more sophisticated, smartphones with embedded sensors are becoming a reality. For example, many smartphone apps utilise smartphone-based sensors to determine jogging distance, speed, the route, and even the number of steps an individual takes along his or her jogging route.  More specifically, the Convertis PiiX  can measure heart rate, respiratory rate, posture, activity level and so much more.

 

A wireless sensor called AliveCor Heart Monitor was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.  This interesting piece of technology can currently be prescribed by doctors and works by simply connecting it to a smartphone.  Then, when an individual touches two sensors on the device, it can produce and record a reliable electrocardiogram.  Further, this electrocardiogram can be transmitted to doctors in real-time.  Without a doubt, this product will come in handy for at-risk individuals.

 

Should People Embrace this Technology?

That said, the Food and Drug Administration is still cautious about this type of technology.  For example, they expressed concern that the data given on the smartphones to patients and their doctors may be inaccurate information.  Fortunately today, the processors used in smartphones are incredibly powerful and can minimize these types of worries.  In fact, the newest smartphones are definitely comparable to small handheld computers since they are so powerful and capable of many tasks.

 

As more and more of these types of devices are being introduced to individuals and medical professionals, it will not be long before there are applications and devices that could possibly monitor the health of people on a constant basis and in turn, let doctors know if there are any causes for concern.  Moreover, as mentioned earlier, this type of technology will generate more data which in turn can be analysed to further prevent and best treat diseases in the future.

-Larisa Redins

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Healthcare Data Analytics Can Help Physicians with Better Job Performance

While the majority of physicians are competent, the power of Big Data can help physicians improve their service to patients; as such, data analytics are now increasingly being used to measure physician performance levels.  One area that needs improvement in particular is the prevention of potential blood clots in US hospitals. Clinically referred to as deep-vein thrombosis or DVT, this condition refers to a blood clot that originates in a vein deep in the legs or lower abdomen.  The clot can then interfere with blood flow and in some cases, it can break up and create blood clots that travel via the blood and be lodged in the lungs where they can cause major organ damage, and even lead to death.  In fact, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 60,000-100,000 people in the United States die from blood clots each year.

 

How good are your doctors?

How good are your doctors?

With that said, these blood clots in patients are preventable.  How?  Well, if the patients at risk are given the appropriate medications, these blood clots can be minimized.  However, according to studies, some physicians are not prescribing blood clot prevention medications to patients with certain blood clot risk factors.

 

Some of the Blood Clot Risk Factors Include:

 

  • Vein Injury due to Injury or Major Surgery
  • Tubes Placed in Veins for Medical Treatment
  • Long Car Rides and Airline Trips
  • Limited Mobility due to Medical Reasons
  • Abdominal Cancer or Heart Failure
  • Being Overweight
  • Being Over Age 60
  • Being Pregnant
  • Previous or Family History of Blood Clots
  • Taking Birth Control Pills
  • Being a Smoker
  • Having High Blood Pressure

 

How Can Physician Performance Improve?

 

While reprimanding particular doctors can lead to an uncomfortable situation, issuing a “report card” of sorts to all doctors based on data analytics can be a more effective way of managing physicians and improving positive treatment outcomes in the process.  Of course, variables such as risk factors, complications, and volume of patients will also be taken into consideration when evaluating doctors.

Additionally, the hospital administration will work with the physicians to help improve their “report card”.  For example, physicians may simply need additional medical decision support tools to help them with patient assessments.

 

To conclude, data analytics offers a great opportunity to improve physician performance and increase patient treatment outcomes as well.

 

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Data Analytics Will Improve the US Economy

According to a McKinsey report, computing and analytics technology is transforming “data into insights that create operational efficiencies”.  More specifically, by the year 2020, data analytics has the potential to increase the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the manufacturing and retail sectors by upwards of $325 billion.

Fortunately, the costs associated with government and health care services can decrease a generous $285 billion by this same date.

Called Data Driven Innovation (DDI), a recent report also suggested that the proper use of Big Data can significantly save money, resources, and increase overall efficiency.  After all, data analytics can benefit all industries that include healthcare, education, the environment, security and many more areas.

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Data Analytics and Healthcare

In North America, healthcare organizations currently spend over $20 billion on IT-related expenses and over the next decade, this number is expected to increase to almost 7.5 percent.  Moreover, due to the HITECH Act, the US government has committed to pay over $30 billion to healthcare facilities and professionals. Health care related IT expenditures include data analytics, electronic health records, revenue cycle management, therapy software, telemedicine, informative websites and patient interaction phone apps.

Therefore, with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and approximately 35 million new health care users, the need for efficient technology is greater than ever.  For example, information gathered from patient data can be used to improve proactive healthcare delivery for individuals at risk. Further, pharmacists would be better equipped to track and customize individual prescriptions. Understandably then, there is also demand for technology that will ensure that this data remains secure.

 

 

Big Data Helps Analysts to Understand the Economy

While data analytics will definitely improve the overall economic outlook in the future, it can interestingly also help analysts understand the workings of the economy itself.  For example, analysts traditionally had to rely on time consuming research surveys to garner a better picture about what is going on in the economy.  However, due to the advances in data analytics technology, vast amounts of data can now be collected and analysed in an extremely effective manner.  In particular, the activity of small business can more readily be monitored.  Since the output of small business accounts for approximately 15 percent of the total US economic output, the importance of understanding small business activity cannot be overlooked.

Overall then, recent technological advances in data analytics will definitely help the US economy in the near future – as well as help individuals to understand this economy.

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Check out the new Business Intelligence Dashboards by BI@S!

How are you monitoring your business? BI@S has just released 3 new dashboards; Procurement Self-Analysis and Production Capacity for the Manufacturing industry and Healthcare Financials for the Healthcare Industry; which would not only bring you up-to-speed, but put you ahead of the curve on the latest business information your company is generating!

Click Here to check out other dashboards made for the Manufacturing Industry!

Click Here to check out other dashboards made for the Manufacturing Industry!

Click here to check out more dashboards made for the Healthcare Industry!

Click here to check out more dashboards made for the Healthcare Industry!

To get a closer look at how you can be managing your enterprise with your own business data, whether it be a manufacturing company or healthcare facility, sign up for a free trial with BI@S today!

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Big Data Will Create Millions of Jobs in the Next Two Years

As you are aware, governments, companies, and other organizations are increasingly recognising the value of Big Data.  For example, health organizations use data to manage hospitals and provide better patient care, and businesses use data to better understand their customers.  As such, it may not be surprising to learn that a study from Gartner states that Big Data will create close to 4.5 million jobs by the year 2015. With that said, unfortunately only just one-third of these positions will be filled by qualified applicants.  Fortunately though, as more user friendly interfaces are being developed to make data analysis more accessible, more people will become interested in this exciting field.

Job Opportunity Calssified

 

What Industries Will Be Hiring?

Some of the sectors that will require qualified individuals include the health care, retail, and manufacturing sectors.  After all, studies show that these organizations can profit considerably if these industries can effectively make sense of their data.

 

What Types of Jobs Will be Available?

Some of the positions that will be available include:

  • IT jobs – require people who can support the computer hardware and software involved with big data.
  • Analytical jobs – require people with analytical and statistical knowledge
  • Managerial jobs – require people who can use the data to make efficient business decisions.

 

 

How Can Schools Prepare People for a Career in Data Analysis?

Schools can offer more courses in statistics and data analysis – as well as offer more practical hands-on training.  Universities can also become better at sharing resources and can better work at developing relationships with companies.  In turn, students will be prepared for the workforce as their courses incorporate more real-world business data and relevant examples.

 

Overall, the future in Big Data and data analysis is promising, and forward-thinking individuals should seriously consider a career in this growing field.

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Webinar: Developing a Cost-Effective Analytics Roadmap for the Healthcare Industry

Join us for our next Webinar: Developing a Cost-Effective Analytics Roadmap for the Healthcare Industry

Thursday, October 10th 2013, 1pm

The healthcare industry has been overrun by a slew 0f big data, and also some new regulations, in the past few years, so much so that it’s become an overwhelming burden just to keep up.  Much of that data is being stored in data warehouses; or even worse, filing cabinets; where it can end up sitting until it becomes little more than dusty history.  What the healthcare industry needs is an analytics roadmap which will allow them use these critical data to improve hospital management, reduce overall costs, monitor patient care, and also prepare them for the future.

 

See what your KPIs could look like in business intelligence dashboards!

See what your KPIs could look like in business intelligence dashboards!

This webinar will show healthcare industry personnel how to:

  • Determine what is most important now for their hospital or practice
  • How to put together a roadmap which will highlight these important Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
  • How to put that roadmap to use in order to map out the future of your enterprise

Schedule:

  • There will be a 30-minute overview of BI and how an analytics roadmap is developed, as well as a demonstration of the BI@S Healthcare KPI Tool and some examples of interactive dashboards.
  • 30 minutes of questions from health care industry professionals to help guide them in actually developing the first steps of an analytics roadmap during the webinar.  Questions during this period will be taken only from healthcare professionals, not from vendor representatives!

Speakers:

 

  • Jay Stanell, Process & Metrics Specialist for BI@S
  • Dan Pirato, Customer Engineer for BI@S
  • Paul Grabham, CEO of BI@S

This webinar is the first in our series for Analytics in the Healthcare Industry.

Register here for our next Webinar!

Register here for our next Webinar!

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Healthcare Law Affecting Many Businesses–Analyze It

Regardless of your politics, there is no doubt that the federal Patient Affordability Act, popularly known as Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act, is going to have tremendous effects on virtually all businesses of all kinds.  Already, there are stories in the media virtually every day talking about those effects.  One I noted today indicates even amusement parks are being affected.  According to the Washington Times, “The SeaWorld chain of amusement parks is cutting hours for thousands of its part-time workers from 32 hours per week to 28 hours as of November, the Orlando Sentinel reported.”  You can read that story here.

 

No longer fun & games for employees of SeaWorld!

No longer fun & games for employees of SeaWorld!

All of these changes are going to have a dramatic effect on all aspects of our economy and our lives.  No private business will be unaffected, as indicated by the piece on SeaWorld.  Obamacare was a massive bill which even some of its proponents didn’t fully understand.

 

If ever there was a need for private businesses of all kinds to bring advanced analytics to the table, this is it.  Actually advanced analytics can be brought to bear at relatively low cost–at least compared to the costs associated with Obamacare.  And it is perhaps the one tool that would help businesses navigate these churning waters.

–Warren B. Causey

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