The Data Behind: Helping Healthcare Get Better

EMILY ARENT | March 4, 2020

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Healthcare is experiencing a digital transformation, shifting how the medical ecosystem operates and the way that care is delivered. And all of this change comes down to one little word: data. In 2013, the healthcare industry produced 153 exabytes of data; in 2020, that volume is estimated to increase over 15-fold to 2,314 exabytes. It’s projected that healthcare data is expanding faster than in manufacturing, financial services, and media. That’s right — we produce more data at the doctor’s office annually than we do swiping our credit cards or surfing Netflix. It follows that unlocking the power of all that data is the key to transforming the future of healthcare with quality and precision in mind, across clinical, financial,  and operational processes. As Big Data continues to expand, what are some of the major trends that data leaders in the healthcare industry are addressing in 2020 and beyond? In this piece, we explore the data that impacts decision-making within the healthcare industry, and how this data helps practices tackle the challenges facing the communities that they serve.

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Embracing healthcare’s digital transformation 2.0

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Impact of Incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Healthcare Industry

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Impact of AI in the Healthcare Industry In the coming years, AI in the healthcare industry will improve the day-to-day life of healthcare practitioners, augment the patient experience, improve care delivery, and can even facilitate life-saving treatments and revolutionize the industry. Additionally, AI will improve population-health management, operations, and strengthen innovations. According to Statista, the global AI healthcare market will increase to more than US$28 billion by 2025. Here is a detailed look into the areas where and how AI in the healthcare industry will be impactful. Chronic Care Management Chronic diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, kidney diseases, are the leading cause of disability and death in the US and the main drivers of the country’s annual health cost. Effectively managing various chronic diseases is an overarching and long-term process. But with the help of the right tool, healthcare providers can meet the needs of these patients without delay. Artificial intelligence tools in the healthcare industry can help healthcare providers overcome the complexities of chronic disease management and make it more effective and provide quality treatment. AI in the healthcare industry is increasingly being leveraged by organizations to improve chronic disease management, enhance patient health, and drive down costs, which will also eventually result in data-driven and personalized care. AI in the healthcare industry is expected to move the industry toward proactive care delivery from a reactive one and lead the industry to provide more individualized treatments. This is just one of the ways AI in the medical industry is going to revolutionize chronic care management in hospitals. Care Delivery Artificial intelligence in the healthcare industry is changing the way care is delivered; it is expected to make healthcare more efficient, accurate, and accessible. Reducing costs and improving health outcomes are the values health systems and hospitals are trying to deliver to patients every day. Hospitals are increasingly incorporating technologies, which are powered by the use of AI in healthcare to meet the challenge. According to the American Hospital Association (AHA), AI in the healthcare industry has unlimited potential to solve most of the vexing challenges in the industry. They identify AI use cases in the healthcare industry in four broad areas, which are administrative, operational, financial, and clinical areas. Administrative Use Cases for AI in the Healthcare Industry • Admission procedures • Appointment scheduling • Customer service responses • Discharge instructions • Hiring and orientation protocols • Licensure verification • Patient check-in procedure • Prior authorizations • Quality measure reporting Operational Use Cases of AI in the Healthcare Industry • Inventory management • Materials management • Supply chain management • Facilities management Financial Use Cases for AI in the Healthcare Industry • Billing and collections • Claims management • Insurance eligibility verification • Revenue cycle management Clinical Use Cases of AI in the Healthcare Industry • Predictive technologies • Interventional technologies By incorporating and utilizing these scopes with AI in the healthcare industry, the industry can be transformed into a next-gen level in no time. It also allows healthcare practitioners to focus more on patients, which would eventually help in raising staff morale and improving retention. Clinical Decision Support Recent advancements in AI in the health industry are capable of enhancing the currently used clinical decision support (CDS) tools to have value-based imaging and to improve patient safety. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), the synergy between CDS systems and AI in the healthcare industry will be able to: • Reduce friction in radiology workflows • Identify relevant imaging features easily • Generate structured data to develop machine learning algorithms • Enable an evolution toward decision support for a holistic patient perspective • Suggest imaging examinations in complex clinical scenarios • Assist in identifying appropriate imaging opportunities • Suggest appropriate individualized screening • Aid health practitioners to ensure continuity of care AI in the healthcare industry is competent in making CDS a next-gen one, enhancing the experiences of radiologists and providers, and improving patient care. Diagnostics Slowly but surely, AI is improving almost every aspect of human life with innovations and advancements. The latest is that AI in the healthcare industry is impending a revolution in medical diagnostics by providing accurate risk assessments, accelerating disease detection, and boosting hospital productivity. By automatically prioritizing urgent cases and accelerating reading time, image recognition AI enhances the workflow of radiologists. It even helps in the prevention of diseases by the early detection of diseases. In medical images such as x-rays, MRIs, and CT scans, AI-driven software can efficiently be used to accurately spot signs of many diseases, especially in detecting many chronic diseases such as cancer. According to the NIH, AI will be widely applied in the healthcare industry especially for various tasks such as patient engagement and adherence, diagnosis, and treatment recommendations. So, there is no doubt that AI in healthcare will revolutionize the diagnostic process in the approaching years by detecting diseases, classifying diseases, and improving the decision-making process. The application of AI in the healthcare industry will make people live longer. Triage and Diagnosis AI can be effectively used to automatically triage cases. AI algorithms will analyze the cases and forward cases to pathologists after determining the priority based on the probability of cases according to the criteria set by labs. This makes the workflow of pathologists easier and efficient. Through the process the algorithm will be able to: • Verify the digital images attached to the case belong to that case • Validate the tests ordered and match the specimen type • Identify cases marked as stat • Determine the cases, which can be positive or are most likely to be negative Moreover, AI technologies in the healthcare industry also can be effectively used to provide more accurate and faster diagnoses. This speeds up the entire process of triage and diagnosis and is expected to revolutionize the healthcare industry soon. The Future Outlook for AI in the Healthcare Industry Over the next few years, AI in the healthcare industry has the best opportunities in hybrid models to support clinicians in diagnosis, identifying risk factors, and in treatment planning. This scope will result in faster adoption of AI technology in healthcare, which will show measurable improvements in operational efficiency and patient outcomes. With a plethora of issues to overcome, which are driven by documented factors such as growing rates of chronic diseases and the aging population, it is obvious that the healthcare industry needs new innovative solutions. AI-powered solutions in the healthcare industry will achieve a clear impact on the global healthcare industry in a short time. Frequently Asked Questions Which is the best application of AI in the healthcare sector? Cognitive surgical robotics is the best application of AI in the healthcare sector as it helps practitioners collect data from real surgical processes, which would help in improving existing surgical approaches. Why is artificial intelligence important in healthcare? Artificial intelligence in healthcare is vital as it can help make decisions, analyze and manage data, and have conversations. So, AI will drastically change the everyday practices and roles of clinicians. When was AI-first used in healthcare? The term, Artificial intelligence (AI) was first described in 1950, but the limitations of the term prevented its acceptance. In the 2000s, these limitations were overcome and people started to accept the term.

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Key Benefit Administrators, Inc.

With more than 25 years experience in benefit management and administration, state of the art technology, industry leading customer service, and experienced consulting professionals, we are capable of delivering employee friendly and cost efficient answers to your most challenging benefit issues...

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