Based on the analysis made so far on the effect Big data on restraining healthcare cost, it is being suggested that the industry stands to save an approximate amount to the tune of $450 bn. Further improvements and suggestions which are bound to come by as more research is done in this field will only result in more savings. Important suggestions made so far include doing away with the fee-for –service as a method of payment and change in the mindset of the providers and patients to accept the benefits of making use of data. The second point is highly critical. Unless there is a change in the approach on the part of the stakeholders in terms of their willingness to use the recommendations suggested by the analysis which comes with the sue of data , it will be next to impossible to actually start realizing the benefits of the approach. A case in point could be as simple as the following. No matter how much of investment and research is done in the field of fitness and exercise, the true benefit can never be passed on to people if they continue with the sedentary lifestyles as they have been for all this while . What big data analysis might provide as an input is the importance of exercising and some metrics to prove how it can possibly help people with a better lifestyle. But no matter how many new exercising techniques are suggested, the benefits can never be realized unless people actually start devoting time to fitness. Experiments done in controlled conditions have indicated that even if simple interventions were made successfully, on the large the results will lead to huge savings. This however will require physicians to combine their treatment methodologies with bog data. Although one of the major factors to distinguish one physician from another is their ability of judgment for treatment decisions, there is no harm if they were to combine it with big data usage and multiply the benefits. This however requires a paradigm shift in their openness to this field and a willingness to apply the recommendations.
Various developments over the last two decades in healthcare have resulted in the industry reaching this juncture at which the benefits of harvesting on the data available seem to have a lot of potential. Providers and Payers have digitized their medical records, Pharmaceutical companies have been supplying huge amount of information related to research and development into medical databases. Information from clinical trials and insurance programs are available and most importantly it is possible now to collect and analyze data from multiple sources. However the major factor which is responsible for driving up the demand is that of rising fiscal costs. There is now a huge need among healthcare stakeholders to compile and exchange information. This has been the result of a shift in healthcare delivery approach which is taking place. The tradition method of delivery where the payment was based on treatment volume resulted in high cost escalation which has compelled adoption of models where payment is related to the outcome and just not on the delivery of service. Since it is now the outcome which is of importance the stakeholders have started realizing that the costs can be brought down and results better achieved if there is more cohesion in their approaches and there is avoidance of repetition of processes. For this to happen it is imperative that they have access to common data and systems which make it possible to exchange information. Thus the need for availability of data and its harvesting has never been more.
Physicians who till now have relied on their judgment to take treatment related decisions have also started noticing the benefits of more evidence-based decision making. The process is based on taking inputs from systematic reviewing of clinical data and letting the best available information impact treatment decision. The important point here is that, surveys have indicated that the early adopters of this new approach have already started drawing the benefits. This is not only encouraging but could mean the beginning of a new era in the healthcare industry which till now has not been banking on use of big data compared to others like the retail and banking. There are bound to be roadblocks ahead but the journey nevertheless seems to have started already. Healthcare software development teams can help you build clinical and EHR/EMR software projects within allocated budgets and time schedules.
Can Big Data live upto Healthcare expectations?