Despite Compliance Challenges, Big Data Can Work for Health Care

Kim Mays
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Capitalizing on Big Data: Analytics with a Purpose

Health care data may seem complex in the days of HIPAA compliance, digital patient records and the necessity of data security and privacy. However, health care companies shouldn’t be scared away from the idea of using data-driven technologies and analytics to improve their offerings and patients’ experiences.

One book hopes to lessen the fear-factor of health care data by using non-technical explanations and real-life case studies to show how organizations can use Big Data and health analytics to raise the bar on the delivery of health care to patients. “Big Data and Health Analytics,” from Auerback Publications, was written with health care professionals in mind—not data scientists. So don’t expect too much Big Data jargon or database design lingo.

The book makes sure that all considerations of health care are taken into effect due to its specific issues. When considering how Big Data fits with health care, we learn that health care data often fits this area best:

Big data takes on new meaning when applied to health care. In most industries, the collection, usage, and analysis of data are the foundation of leveraging facts to understand, grow, and improve business performance. Finding ways to thus incorporate unstructured data, images, and geographical uniqueness leads to the concept of big data. Health care data is almost unmatched by other industries due to its challenges in collection, breadth, width, and mass amounts of unstructured data. Most industries leverage basic reporting and analytics for operational effectiveness and focus on advanced analytics and data mining to identify future direction, process improvement, and R&D.

Topics covered in this book include data standards, data governance, health care specific analytics, database designs, data mining and best practices, among others.

Health Care

In our IT Downloads section, you will find a free download for chapter 8, “Big Data: Architecture and Its Enablement.” It explains the architecture necessary to capture, filter, analyze and store Big Data in the health care enterprise. It also touches on database designs that work best for these types of data as well as the importance of strong data governance plans to keep health care data secure and fitting within government compliance laws.

In the health care industry, this book is a must-read for database designers, IT security pros and CIOs in general. It provides insightful information that can help remove the challenges associated with health care compliance as it pertains to data analytics and usage.

Kim Mays has been editing and writing about IT since 1999. She currently tackles the topics of small to midsize business technology and introducing new tools for IT. Follow Kim on Google+ or Twitter.

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