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Big Data and Healthcare

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Big data is not just a fad technology. It is being used in real industries every day to solve problems and improve processes. Information Week recently reported on examples of big data use in healthcare. Let’s take a look:

  • In Pittsburgh, a university’s health plan now uses 6.3 terabytes of data to forecast patient behavior to help provide better preventative care and to better utilize hospital resources.
  • In Jersey City, New Jersey, the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) have been able to improve response rates to less than six minutes (average nationwide is eight minutes, 59 seconds). Their big data systems have allowed them to analyze calls with time of day and geography to better position EMS teams and vehicles.
  • A clinic based in Virginia has worked together with IBM to examine electronic medical records to help identify patients who are at risk for heart disease.  Using both structured and unstructured data, the pilot program was able to achieve 85% accuracy in detecting the medical problem.

What uses of big data are you seeing in your own healthcare and community-wide?