While data and analytics have been utilized in healthcare for some time, information is becoming exponentially more valuable as advancements in technology and infrastructure enable sharing of that data to improve patient outcomes and lower healthcare costs. Intelligent healthcare systems built by leveraging big data analytics and the cloud allow organizations to derive value from their existing healthcare data, providing an effective and efficient means of improving care delivery.
In this blog post, we’ll look at how big data analytics and cloud computing are helping healthcare organizations build smart healthcare systems. We’ll also understand the various benefits of smart healthcare systems.
What are Smart Healthcare Systems?
Smart healthcare systems are the new way of thinking about technology in healthcare. These systems use sensors, computers, and other technologies to gather patient data, store them in a database, analyze them, and provide solutions based on those results. A smart health care system is a computerized network that allows information to be shared between various doctors, clinics, and hospitals. This improves communication between doctors, nurses, and other medical staff. In addition, it also helps share patient records, which can reduce errors and make treatment more effective.
Smart healthcare systems are based on the following four fundamental pillars:
Connectedness is the ability to share information between people, devices, and systems. A connected healthcare environment allows seamless data sharing across multiple departments and institutions. This leads to increased collaboration between healthcare providers and more positive patient outcomes.
Transparency means accessing the information stored in various systems without barriers or limitations. It also refers to understanding what the data means, how it was collected and who collected it. This makes it easier to spot irregularities or errors in your care plan and allows patients to raise questions if they don’t understand something about your treatment or diagnosis.
Security refers to data protection from hackers or unauthorized users who may try to access your information without permission. Healthcare systems must have robust security protocols so that only authorized staff members can access patient records or confidential information about their care plan.
Analytics refers specifically to the ability to analyze large amounts of data quickly and effectively to identify patterns that may indicate potential risks or opportunities for improvement within a given institution or department within a larger organization such as an entire hospital network or healthcare system.
Benefits of Smart Healthcare Systems
The benefits of using this technology are numerous and include:
Better patient care: The health care providers can easily monitor the health status of their patients at any time, which helps them provide better care to their patients. Smart healthcare systems enable faster diagnosis times for complicated cases. With access to all relevant patient information in one place, doctors can diagnose complex cases faster than ever before because they don’t have to spend time searching through paper files or calling other departments for additional information.
Reduced Readmissions: With smart healthcare systems, doctors can monitor patients remotely. This means they do not have to stay in the hospital as long as they would. The use of smart healthcare systems also helps reduce hospital readmissions which in turn helps healthcare organizations earn positive payment adjustments from insurers on annual revenue. Reducing readmissions helps them cut costs through penalties and gain more revenue.
Improved efficiency: Physicians save time as they can get information about their patients without having to meet them physically or talk to them over phone calls. It also saves time by preventing unnecessary tests and repeated visits to the doctor’s office because the physician can many times already know what kind of treatment is required for each patient.
Automation: A smart healthcare system can also help by automating many tasks, such as scheduling appointments or billing clients for services rendered. It can also help automate logistics tasks like ordering supplies or managing inventory levels. This allows more time to focus on growing the business.
Flexibility: Smart healthcare systems can adapt to any business or organization's unique needs, from large hospitals to private clinics or small doctor's offices. Using a single software platform, you'll streamline operations across all departments within your organization without spending extra money on multiple solutions for each department's needs separately.
How are Cloud and Big Data Analytics helping healthcare organizations build smart healthcare systems?
Cloud and big data analytics are bringing a new level of intelligence to healthcare organizations. Analyzing massive amounts of data from multiple sources can help doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals make better decisions.
Cloud computing is defined as on-demand self-service access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. Cloud technology makes moving large amounts of data easier without compromising security or privacy. Cloud computing also makes integrating different types of data from various sources easier, which is crucial for achieving the goal of “smart" healthcare systems.
Healthcare organizations today have to deal with vast volumes of data. This is because there are many patients, each with a unique medical history and treatment plans. Healthcare organizations can now use cloud computing to store and analyze vast data.
Cloud computing has played a crucial role in transforming healthcare by improving efficiency and reducing costs. The benefits of using cloud computing in healthcare include:
- Cost savings – Cloud providers charge for services based on usage rather than paying upfront for hardware and software licenses. This makes it easier for hospitals to budget for IT expenses without worrying about paying for unused hardware or software licenses when they don’t need them anymore.
- Scalability – Cloud providers offer scalability so that you can add more resources when needed without buying additional hardware or software licenses upfront, which can be expensive.
- Ease of use – It’s easy to use cloud-based applications since they require little technical knowledge.
Big data analytics lets you look at trends across entire populations, which helps you make better decisions about treatment options and care plans.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is another important driver. IoT technologies enable devices to send information directly to the cloud, which allows healthcare providers to monitor patients more closely than ever before. For example, wearable fitness trackers can send information about a patient’s heart rate and activity levels directly to doctors so they can check on you if something goes wrong.
Healthcare organizations are using big data analytics tools like machine learning algorithms or deep learning techniques to give patients more personalized care plans that consider their individual needs. This means that doctors can recommend treatments based on genetic makeup or family history instead of just treating everyone with the same set of rules.
Analytics is an integral part of healthcare as it helps understand patient behavior and predict outcomes. It can improve treatment efficacy, reduce costs, improve quality of care and provide insights into disease progression or prevention.
Healthcare applications of big data analytics include:
- Patient monitoring systems – enable continuous monitoring of vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, etc. A system can detect abnormal patterns in these parameters, which may indicate a problem, and alert a doctor or nurse.
- Alert systems – It monitors the presence of infectious diseases like Ebola or Zika virus in patients and notifies doctors if they have been exposed to it so that they can take preventive measures such as administering vaccines, etc. These systems are also used to help public health authorities identify possible outbreaks early so they can be contained before they become epidemic.
- Smart medical devices – Devices like glucose meters that automatically send data on blood sugar levels to doctors so that they can monitor diabetic patients remotely by analyzing trends in the data collected over time which may indicate impending complications such as hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia, etc.
- Disease Detection – The ability to detect disease early and accurately is one of the essential features of smart health care systems. Using big data analytics and machine learning, these systems can identify subtle changes in patient symptoms that could indicate an illness requiring further medical attention. This can be done through various methods, including analyzing electronic records from hospital systems or other sources and other factors such as lifestyle habits or environmental conditions.
- Personalized Care – One of the biggest challenges in personalized care is figuring out what works for whom and why. To do this, you need access to large amounts of data so you can analyze correlations between different factors such as age, gender, and genetic makeup. You also need access to computers powerful enough to crunch all those numbers quickly and efficiently — ideally at scale. Big data analytics enables researchers to identify patterns that explain why some people respond to treatments better than others. This means they can anticipate how individual patients will respond to treatments and personalize their care accordingly.
As with most things, building smart healthcare systems requires a thorough understanding of user and system needs, effective collaborative planning and design processes, and solid technology understanding. But suppose you can implement all three effectively. In that case, the results can be incredible: healthcare systems that are more responsive, intuitive, informative, and just plain helpful for patients and medical practitioners alike.