In healthcare, most data is exchanged electronically between partners via EDI (Electronic Data Interchange), and “Big Data” is helping the industry become more efficient and productive. EDI originated because it provided a structured mechanism for sharing data between disparate organizations and systems.
The more common means of transferring data from source to a data warehouse is ETL, but there are times when you might want to consider using ELT (see James Serra’s “Difference between ETL and ELT” or Daniel Harris’ “ETL vs. ELT: How to Choose the Best Approach for Your Data Warehouse”).
EDI allows the healthcare industry to bring in information needed to help perform analytics. However, in the past, the issue was being able to house all the information and easily retrieve it. There are still some issues with EDI regarding data quality, but that is getting better as each business is learning the need for reliable data to perform their analytics.
EHRs (Electronic Health Records) also play a big role in the ability to perform analytics, and there is an immense amount of raw data available in EHRs, EMRs (Electronic Medical Records) and EDI. “Big Data” now provides a greater opportunity to use this information to perform critical analytics by applying business intelligence techniques.
In the past, the EDI data went to a data warehouse. Now with “Big Data,” the industry is able to house and analyze the information for visibility and quality. When linked with the adjudication system, organizations can get a more complete view of what is happening in their business and deliver real-time analytics of clinical, financial, as well as fraud and HR.
Analytics allow for the examination of patterns to determine how care can be improved while reducing the need for repetitive hospital stays and limiting excessive spending for testings etc. This allows the healthcare industry to reduce fraud, waste, and abuse. “Big Data” allows them to store and go back in their data history to analyze large unstructured datasets to detect anomalies and patterns.
Stay tuned for “How EDI Relates to Cloud Computing.”