Big Data in Healthcare: How It Can Be Used?

According to the research conducted by McKinsey in 2011, the efficient use of big data in the US healthcare system can help reduce expenses by 8% and that can significantly contribute to solving one of the biggest problems for the whole country in general and for every citizen in particular ― the lack of costs for financing this sector.

The point is that healthcare expenditures of the USA are skyrocketing. That is associated with a long list of problems, including unreasonably high drug prices, decreases in the number of taxpayers (due to the ageing of population) and increases in the number of those who need significant help with covering their healthcare bills. So, using every and each available method to minimize the expenses seems to be reasonable.

What is Healthcare Big Data?

Big data is the data that is gathered from a wide range of sources. It is characterized by huge volume, as well as varied structure and nature.

Speaking about healthcare big data, it can be received from such sources:

  • health records;
  • governmental agencies;
  • medical researchers;
  • online platforms for patients;
  • information gathered on the Internet with the help of cookies and similar software;
  • data collected and stored with the help of smartphones and wearables, like smartwatches and fitness trackers;
  • payment information.

And, as you have probably guessed, the major problem associated with use of big data is that it is difficult to standardize it and to form a single database.

Still, as of now, this sphere is actively developing, and new effective solutions are introduced on a regular and frequent basis.

Are There any Other Benefits of the Use of Healthcare Big Data Except Economy?

  • Tracking and preventing dangerous health trends. Medical experts can have the opportunity to see any kind of negative tendencies, to analyze them and to warn patients.
  • Improving medical research results. Researchers will receive access to a huge amount of information and that will, no doubt, help them get a clearer idea of the nature of varied health problems, work out effective preventive methods and achieve better results in searching curative means.
  • Providing personalized care. In case doctors get access to more information about their patients, they will have the opportunity to apply a personal approach in a more effective way.
  • Reducing the negative consequences of medical mistakes and drug quality problems. Due to the use of big data, authorities will have the opportunity to notice all sort of adverse medical events within the shortest reasonable periods of time.

As you can see, the use of big data can provide the healthcare system with a large selection of beneficial opportunities, so, the implementation of the corresponding technologies should be treated by the authorities as the top priority.