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Survey: BI and Analytics Platforms Will be Key for Healthcare Orgs Moving Forward

October 16, 2015
by Rajiv Leventhal and David Raths
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Healthcare organizations are starting to prioritize business intelligence (BI) and analytics initiatives, but challenges remain, according to a survey from HIMSS Analytics and Qlik, a Randor, Pa.-based visual analytics company.

The study, which surveyed 400 respondents, including C-suite, vice president, and director level contacts, confirms implementation of and utilization of BI and analytics platforms result in better decision-making across all segments of a healthcare organization.

With four key areas explored—level of maturity across a variety of use cases, value that has been realized from current initiatives, challenges experienced from current deployments, and future investment plans in healthcare analytics—the survey revealed that BI and analytics platforms provide better internal transparency for easy recognition of clinical and operational efficiencies which can lead to reduction in the average length of stay and higher patient satisfaction.

What’s more, providers do recognize the importance of powerful analytics. In fact, 93 percent of respondents report that adopting a BI and analytics platform is the top priority over the next 12 to 24 months. However, the industry still has a ways to go—only 47 percent currently have a BI and analytics solution in place, and many still face challenges around data quality and end-user adoption.

According to the study, 56 percent of healthcare organizations that are the early adopters of BI platforms improve overall patient care, significantly reduce healthcare costs, while meeting reporting requirements and driving new opportunities to enhance population health. In addition, 48 percent have confirmed they are able to make faster and more accurate decisions, while 47 percent believe the use of BI and analytics platforms result in cost saving.

However, implementing a BI and analytics platform doesn’t come without challenges. Among the top barrier to healthcare organizations fully realizing the potential of BI and analytics platforms (with 42 percent responding) is end-user adoption. When combining the lack of data quality (41 percent) and challenges related to aggregating disparate data sources (27 percent), decision-makers are left relying on outdated spreadsheets and manual processes to analyze data.

In addition, limitations of clinical workflow integration (29 percent), dashboard capabilities (27 percent), reporting capabilities (26 percent), cultural resistance (22 percent) and solution integration (20 percent) all contributed.

“Utilizing a modern and contemporary BI and analytics platform provides real-time data that is simple for self-service use, as it removes the guess work by the end-user and increases adoption,” John Hoyt, executive vice president HIMSS Analytics, said in a statement. “With 42 percent of those surveyed reporting that a hiccup in leveraging BI and analytics platforms is end-user adoption, it is imperative that healthcare organizations implement a system that is user-centric and has the ability to provide quick access, analysis and dissemination of information. This enables healthcare organization executives to make operational improvements, improving overall patient care and efficiency.”

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