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Emdeon and Atigeo Enter into ‘Big Data’ Collaboration

March 12, 2013
by John DeGaspari
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Identifying patterns to improve patient outcomes

Nashville-based Emdeon, Inc. and Atigeo, Bellevue, Wash., a data analytics company, announced an agreement at last week’s HIMSS13 conference to collaborate on the development of new software solutions. The companies will explore the use of intelligent analytics layered on top of petabytes of healthcare data to improve health outcomes.

“Ultimately, the combination of a network of connectivity, universal health information exchange and freakishly intelligent analytics can help to significantly improve healthcare in the U.S.,” Miriam Paramore, executive vice president and product development for Emdeon, said in a statement. 

The agreement calls for using Ategio’s x-Patterns data analytics platform to rapidly expose insights abstracted across vast repositories of structured and unstructured data.  Given the sharp rise of big data in healthcare, there is a need for technology solutions to piece together data into meaningful pictures, the companies say. Atigeo’s x-Patterns platform is a cloud-based application framework for rapidly building enterprise-grade, intelligent applications that make big data more accessible and actionable, according to the announcement.

In an interview with Healthcare Informatics, Atigeo CEO and founder Michael Sandoval said the combination of the data analytics platform and Emdeon’s data repository will reveal insights that would not have been possible before. He described x-Patterns as a “data agnostic” platform with regard to whether the data is structured or non-structured. He says the way the x-Patterns platform absorbs and integrates data in a way that avoids the problems of traditional data mining with disparate data systems and dissimilar taxonomies.

“In true ‘big data,’ analysts talk about volume, variety and velocity,” Sandoval said. “We are able to do that well above the petabyte scale on the volume side, of any type of varietal, and in the velocity category in microseconds in an automated way.” He added that on the human language side, the platform is able to identify the proper context and apply the data against any existing application or workflow of the provider, “so that it appropriately optimizes the applications and workflows.”

Sandoval said the relationship has two basic goals: to leverage the x-Patterns platform across Emdeon’s data to expose patterns for their existing products, and to bring new products to market.

David Talby, Ph.D., Atigeo’s vice president of engineering, said one example of an application, which was showcased at HIMSS, was a hospital readmissions application that uses Atigeo’s analytics platform to build a statistical model for when a patient is likely to be readmitted. “We are thinking about the patient, have more signals, and we have the algorithm to actually use those signals,” he said. Talby added that the collaboration encompasses national coverage, and that the application is compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations.

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