Healthcare Data Warehousing: A Go-to Option for Secure Data Storage

When it comes to healthcare data, three aspects take the topmost priority – data security, storage, and transfer. We’ll be highlighting the data storage aspect in this newest article. With surplus healthcare data collected daily, there’s a need for secured and large storage space. This is where healthcare data warehousing takes the center stage.

What is healthcare data warehousing?

Well, in simple terms, healthcare data warehousing is an organized central repository for all the information retrieved from sources such as EHRs, lab databases, enterprise resource planning systems, wearables, radiology, etc.

As much as data plays an essential role in determining diagnosis, population health, and predicting future health conditions, a lot of organizations lack a data-driven approach. As per the latest research, 23 percent of the executives reported that their companies had generated a data-driven approach, but it was down from 31 percent four years ago.

Healthcare data warehousing is one of the key aspects for creating an integrated data platform. It comprises of data lake, a connectivity layer, integrations, reporting, analytics, and a data warehouse. The data platform gathers and transforms raw data into usable data for making informed decisions.

Let’s shed more light on healthcare data warehousing and understand it in detail.

Types of Healthcare Data Warehousing

The choice of healthcare data warehousing depends on a myriad of aspects. These may be the scalability of healthcare organizations, objectives, specialization, and much more. So, to get the appropriate warehouse, consult with an IT expert who can help you out. No, let’s talk about the three main types of data warehouses:

  1. ODS (Operational Data Store): This type of data warehouse refreshes itself in real-time. It is a must-have warehouse for routine activities such as storing medical staff records or billing. ODS is needed when data warehouse systems don’t support the reporting process.
  2. EDW (Enterprise Data Warehouse): This type of model is a go-to option for large healthcare organizations. It allows providers to analyze multiple pieces of information across the departments, thus having a unified way of data representation.
  3. Data Mart: A data mart is a subset of data warehouse and it is built to maintain a specific department, unit, or region. The information from the data mart is stored with ODS regularly, and the ODS sends the data to the enterprise data warehouse, where it is used and stored.

Key Benefits of Using Healthcare Data Warehousing

1. To Make Informed Decisions

Data brings with it the power to make informed decisions. Healthcare providers face numerous challenges in diagnosing a patient. It is paramount that they make the right clinical decision and recommend the correct treatment.

Providers can leverage healthcare data warehousing to access patient data. This usually includes medical history, lab results, surgeries, family medical history, etc. Based on this data, providers can take a call on the patient’s condition. For instance, if a patient is constantly falling ill, then past medical results are checked from the data warehouse for potential autoimmune disorders. Healthcare facilities can consider integrating a data warehouse with a clinical decision support system for quick and easy access to healthcare data.

2. Optimized Financial Management

Healthcare finance is broadly categorized into claims and payments. Effective cost management can help to allocate resources where they are needed the most. One of the key difficulties faced by the admin staff is processing surplus amount of claims data.

Integration of data analytical tools with healthcare data warehousing can aid in processing this data and give a bird’s eye view of the insurance procedures.

3. Efficient Reporting

Accurate reporting allows providers to effectively evaluate patient conditions and administer treatment. A centralized repository like data warehouse that also offers analytics facility can generate accurate reports.

What’s more, clinical researchers can use data visualization tools to boost research. A centralized repository aids to identify potential population health conditions, which can be efficiently reported to the concerned authority for further actions.

4. Seamless Data Exchange

Seamless data exchange, also known as interoperability is a vital aspect of the healthcare industry. A healthcare organization runs on multiple healthcare software, ranging from EHRs, practice management software, e-prescribing software, telemedicine, appointment scheduling software, patient portals, and more.

With myriad of systems in the picture, seamless data exchange takes the highest priority. Healthcare data warehousing brings together all entities by consolidating data from EHRs, insurance claims, and lab results. It then goes on to make a unified repository, so providers can easily access the data.

5. Enhanced Value-Based Care

An accessible healthcare data warehousing straightaway means accurate, timely, and analytical-based treatment. So, from a patient’s perspective, a combination of EMR data along with other nitty-gritties gives provider’s a complete picture on the patient’s journey. This serves as a vital report to improve health and bridge the gaps, thus elevating patient satisfaction, loyalty, and experience.

Furthermore, data warehouse with analytical tools allows providers to gain deeper insights on the efficiency of treatment plans, long-term health conditions, and also help to tackle chronic diseases. Precise treatment plans avoids unnecessary wastage of resources, time, and money.

6. Fast Healthcare Operations

The data warehouse automates processes by offering prompt access to all types of information. When data is collected in one place in a fixed format, providers spend less time in processing the data. They can perform everyday tasks effectively and at a faster pace.

Pivotal Features of Healthcare Data Warehousing

While implementing healthcare data warehousing, organizations need to look out for these key features that will help them with efficient data management:

  1. Data Storage: Healthcare data warehousing offers summarized, integrated, and carefully categorized data storage. This feature includes options for data storage for varied environments such as cloud, on-premise, and hybrid.
  2. Data Integration: Captures structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data from sources such as EHRs, claims management systems, public health databases, HR management software, etc. It also encompasses big data, along with medical data loading and querying. Data warehouse is equipped to standardize data from both external and internal sources.
  3. Data Deduplication and Reliability: Data deduplication ensures the integrity of the data in the repository. Automated data backup in cloud ensures reliability. Plus, there’s a high-performance query processing because of data indexing, result-caching, and materialized view support.
  4. Interoperability: Healthcare data warehousing ensures seamless data exchange between multiple healthcare systems, thus elevating interoperability.
  5. Compliance: With data warehouse, healthcare organizations can enjoy data masking, multi-factor authentication, HIPAA compliance, and assessment of threats and vulnerabilities.
  6. E-Signatures: This feature is applicable for physicians only. So, all the changes in the medical records are signed by the providers with an e-signature, thus making them responsible for the data accuracy stored in the repository.

Cost of Implementing Healthcare Data Warehousing

The cost of healthcare data warehousing depends on multiple aspects. But, on average, healthcare organizations can expect the cost to range between $40,000 to $270,000.

Aspects that may influence the cost of healthcare data warehousing are:

  1. Regulatory compliance requirements that includes HIPAA, FHIR, or HITRUST.
  2. Integration with other healthcare systems imbibes complexity, so this can increase expenses.
  3. Scalability, fault-tolerance, data backup processes, data redundancy, failover mechanisms, alerting systems, and monitoring.
  4. Deployment format – cloud, on-premise, or hybrid
  5. Functional requirements such as multiple integrations, additional storage, advanced analytical options, and enhanced security.
  6. The amount of data stored, processed, and analyzed can raise expenses.

Looking to implement a robust healthcare data warehousing? Just connect with Arkenea, a healthcare software development company, known to create HIPAA compliant software that suits the needs of the client. We’ve got you covered.