Big data is making an impact in all areas of our lives. You have probably heard the term big data before but you might not understand exactly what it is. Essentially, big data refers to the collection of massive amounts of data, with the ultimate goal of analyzing that data and drawing conclusions about the behavior and features of large groups of people. The science of interpreting the large data sets gathered is known as data analytics and without it, big data is essentially useless.
Big data has already made a big difference to the healthcare industry and has gone from a tool for maximizing profits to one that is helping us gain a deeper understanding of disease outbreaks than we ever thought was possible. Data allows us to assess the effectiveness of our current techniques and identify areas in which we can improve. Data analytics also helps guide us in the right direction when we are looking for weak points in our current approaches.
Having access to a lot of data about diseases allows us to build a picture of where they originate from and the journey they subsequently end up taking. Understanding these journeys, why some paths are followed and others aren’t, is crucial to gaining a deep understanding of how to prevent these diseases in the first place.
Improvements in our understanding of how diseases spread is supplemented by increasingly sophisticated and portable diagnostic testing kits that allow us to detect the presence of a number of different conditions using a smartphone, or a so-called ‘lab on paper’, which is a pocket-sized piece of paper capable of being used to diagnose a number of different conditions.
Because healthcare providers are now holding much more information than they previously were, many are having to learn very quickly about cybersecurity and data protection. Consequently, there is a growing market for qualified individuals who are capable of handling medical information. This subject, known as health information management, is becoming an increasingly valuable degree because it’s more prominent role in the healthcare industry.
If you are interested in the management of health information then you should consider studying for an online HIM degree. The online health information management program will teach you what legal responsibilities exist for the holders of data, as well as how to best organize such data so that it can be of use to those who need it.
Data can be collected about hospital processes, as well as patient’s medical history, and this opens the door for healthcare providers to look for opportunities to make some significant reductions in waste and, hopefully, some corresponding increases in profits. In the United States, healthcare fraud costs the industry $210.7 million, but many analysts believe that big data can help to solve this problem.
Big data is changing every aspect of our lives and healthcare is no exception. We live in an increasingly complicated world with more pressures on our healthcare system than ever before, but big data could help us to fix that.