Business Intelligence Tools Can Reduce Rising Healthcare Costs

How Business Intelligence Tools Can Reduce Rising Healthcare Costs [Infographic Wednesdays]

Infographic highlights how business intelligence tools can reduce rising healthcare costs to improve quality of care, increase patient satisfaction, and reduce labor costs
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Future of Health Technology

The Future of Health Technology Over a 30 Year Span [Infographic Wednesdays]

Future of health technology infographic  visualization that maps the next three decades of health technology Read More

Forecast Healthcare IT Trends in 2013 and Beyond

3 Healthcare IT Trends for 2013 and Beyond

3 Healthcare IT trends that shares Thomas Edison’s vision for healthcare in 2013 and beyond Read More

HHS Todd Park

Power of Open Data and Innovation for Health Care with Todd Park

 Todd Park, U.S. CTO discusses unleashing the power of open data and innovation for health care 

Great video with Todd Park, U.S. Chief Technology Officer; Former CTO, Health and Human Services (HHS) discussing how innovation for healthcare will continue to affect changes to our health-care system, create jobs and improve life for Americans. He will focus on his current work and how (which he helped create in his previous position as CTO of HHS) is being incorporated to help reduce health-care costs. He will also briefly discuss his overall work as CTO and how his health-care work ties innovation for healthcare.

Park joined the administration in August 2009 as chief technology officer of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In this role, he served as a change agent and “entrepreneur-in-residence,” helping HHS harness the power of data, technology and innovation to improve the health of the nation.


3M ICD-10

3 Implications of 3M’s Open Source Health Data Dictionary

3M ICD-10Last month, 3M Health Information Systems released their Health Data Dictionary as open source software making it free and available worldwide. The open source contract is part of an agreement with U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), 3M Healthcare Data Dictionary will provide the core technology to enable semantic interoperability for the joint DoD/VA integrated Electronic Health Record (iEHR), making it possible to share medical knowledge and secure patient data between care providers at U.S. military treatment facilities located around the world and VA Medical Centers.

What is the 3M Health Data Dictionary?

The 3M Health Data Dictionary is a controlled medical library server that incorporates linking terms from multiple clinical information systems and standard terminologies, such as LOINC, RxNorm, and SNOMED CT. It maps disparate medical terms to give data context and meaning, and is used to standardize data to make it interoperable and computable.  Simply put, it can be viewed as a master translator  tool linking terms together for the purpose of having structured data to comply with meaningful use requirements.

How it Works

  • The Health Data Dictionary server is the complete repository of concepts and associations, maintained and made available for download in its most up-to-date version.
  • Organizations can download and install the package locally to ensure constnt access to its contents communicating via HL7
  • Users of the Health Data Dictionary will have the ability to request additions to the dictionary, which the team at 3M will review and determine if they should be included
  • The Health Data Dictionary becomes ever evolving repository of information evolving with the language

By making the 3M Health Data Dictionary open source, it drives more standardized documentation as well as being able to take documentation that does not look standard and make it standard by linking terms together.

3M Health Data Dictionary Implications:

  1. Interoperability-  Accelerates the implementation of EHRs  and help healthcare organizations achieve meaningful use standards Also encourages interoperability for health information exchanges
  2. Analytics – Enables users to perform outcomes analysis and reporting by individual patient or across enterprise populations. Can serve as a foundation for  enhancing healthcare analytics, decision support, and business intelligence.
  3. ICD-10-The Data Dictionary can help mitigate disconnects between ICD-9 and ICD-10 coding systems similar to GEMS

Overall, the goal is to achieve a common language in healthcare with the ability to access meaningful data, analyze it, and deliver it back to clinicians to improve decision support for patients.



KLAS Report: 55% of Providers Planning to Buy Business Intelligence Tools Over 3 Yrs

KLAS ReportAccording to a the recent KLAS report released this week, over half of healthcare providers are looking to purchase business intelligence tools over the net years signaling a tidal wave of growth as the industry search for solutions to help them combat a number of regulatory challenges such as ACO, HIE, and others.

The KLAS report, Business Intelligence Perception 2012: A Wave is Coming, was created from data collected between January and March representing 137 unique healthcare provider respondents. The graph below highlights the percentage of those respondents planning to purchase healthcare BI tools over the next three years.

KLAS Report: BI Perception Study

Source:KLAS BI Perception Study













Other highlights of the study include 83% of respondents have adopted a forward thinking approach to BI and McKesson leads the pack with the most provider considerations. Other vendors leading the report include IBM, Oracle, QlikTech and SAP with respondents identifying 37 vendors in consideration for BI products. One CIO told KLAS, “If hospitals can’t produce data analytics in the next couple of years, they are going to suffer. As far as I am concerned, data is money in the future.[pullquote]“If hospitals can’t produce data analytics in the next couple of years, they are going to suffer. As far as I am concerned, data is money in the future.[/pullquote]  

The top five “wish list” for healthcare-specific functionality includes:

  • Enterprise healthcare BI: 27 percent
  • Predictive analytics: 22 percent
  • ACO analytics: 16 percent
  • Healthcare data integration/data warehousing: 9 percent
  • Population health; 9 percent

One of the key points that this KLAS report points out is that healthcare providers must purchase multiple BI tools to meet their needs. Going forward, BI vendors must create integrated solutions that is able to meet all of their customers need. Adding multiple systems can be for IT departments to supports can be costly. Additionally, 65 percent of providers plan on implementing BI alone without the help of consultants.

To learn more about business intelligence, the report Business Intelligence Perception 2012: A Wave is Coming is available online to healthcare providers for a significant discount. Providers and vendors can visit more information or to purchase the report. In addition, providers can participate in the research by evaluating a healthcare technology vendor they utilize at

About KLAS
KLAS is a research firm specializing in monitoring and reporting theperformance of healthcare vendors. KLAS’ mission is to improve HIT delivery by independently measuring vendor performance for the benefit of our healthcare provider partners, consultants, investors, and vendors. Working together with executives from over 4,500 hospitals and over 2,500 clinics, KLAS delivers timely reports, trends, and statistics, which provide a solid overview of worldwide vendor performance in the industry. KLAS measures performance of software, professional services, medical equipment, and infrastructure vendors. For more information, go to, email, or call 1-800-920-4109 to speak with a KLAS representative. Follow KLAS on Twitter at

Healthcare's Data Conundrum Infographic

Infographic:Healthcare’s Data Conundrum

Infographic explores how healthcare’s data conundrum can be used to make the capture, understanding, & utilization of data possible  to improve patient care

With the electronic health record adoption rates rising and the push for a personalized and interactive approach to medicine becomes more prevalent, there is an opportunity for our healthcare system to transform from an inefficient machine into a well-oiled producer of actionable, meaningful information.  And this opportunity begins at the point of patient data capture.  Currently, it’s estimated that if “healthcare big data” is leveraged effectively, it could create $300 billion in value every year.

The question is – how do we turn disparate data into meaningful information? 

The following infographic from Nuance Healthcare explores how technology can be used to make the capture, understanding and utilization of data possible – to improve patient care and create a more efficient healthcare system.

Healthcare's Data Conundrum Infographic

















While some see big data in healthcare as a “Mt. Everest” of sorts, Nuance views it as geode full of potential if cracked open with the right tools.  Over the coming days, be sure to keep an eye for the big data news and twitter chatter coming out of #HIMSS12

ThoughtLeader 3

White Paper: How to Achieve an ROI for Healthcare BI


White paper written by  Jim B-Reay, Aspen Advisors

Abstract: As hospitals make significant investments in electronic medical record (EMR) technology, along with related updates to hospital billing, materials management, costing, and quality systems, they typically find that the promised analytics and reporting are not adequate. To tie together data from these disparate systems and even to optimize access to data within an integrated system, a Business Intelligence (BI) strategy is needed.

A typical BI strategy encompasses data governance; data staging and warehousing; tools for query, reporting, and dashboards; and a staffing model to build the initial framework and expand the architecture to serve the changing needs of the business.

For many organizations, this additional investment is hard to justify considering the outlays already made in their core systems. While working on one strategy recently, I was asked: “If we make this investment, how can we measure the direct return on investment (ROI)? What is the actual ROI of an investment in BI?”
To help the client answer these questions, I reached out to a dozen organizations, all of which have BI programs of some degree of maturity and asked the very same questions. The responses I got were different and enlightening. I found that successful sites had a common theme: BI value is based on the use of the system to analyze data from various clinical and administrative systems and the willingness of the organization to act upon the findings to make changes that ultimately improve productivity and efficiency.


About Jim B-Reay:

Jim B-Reay has over 18 years of experience as an accomplished program manager and advisor to healthcare and IT executives. His deep understanding of healthcare operations, breadth of technical experience, and strong interpersonal skills enable Mr. B-Reay to demonstrate equal comfort assessing technical details, managing a diverse project team, or facilitating decisions among a group of executive and clinical sponsors. With a background in applica