Emerging Trends in Healthcare Data Analytics for 2022
Blog Post | January 17, 2022

Few industries have needed to adapt faster than healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic. There’s no sign that things will slow down in 2022, either. Particularly of note are several rapidly emerging trends in healthcare data analytics.

Many in healthcare have championed interoperability for years, and in 2022, the industry looks poised to make a major push in that direction. This year, several healthcare data solutions will also look to address the physician burnout that emerged due to the pandemic and the rise in telehealth use. Below, learn more about these and other major trends in healthcare data analytics for 2022.

Healthcare Informatics for Better Patient Outcomes

More data won’t help healthcare providers if it is difficult to leverage for insights. Cumbersome electronic health records (EHRs) and other software make it difficult for physicians to connect the data points necessary to come to important conclusions. Plus, data silos keep information locked away with a single department or specialist, limiting the opportunities for any one physician to see the full picture.

Many organizations are beginning to utilize healthcare informatics to address these weaknesses. Essentially, healthcare informatics is artificial intelligence applied to organize incoming data and quickly link it to the rest of the patient’s health record. ISACA advisor Neil Lappage gives the example of a chest scan doubling as an opportunity to look for the “early signs of COVID.” With healthcare informatics, AI combines data points from various procedures to find possible diagnoses that would otherwise be difficult for a single physician to track.

These efforts aim to complement the industry’s larger push towards interoperability. The goal is to make healthcare data less siloed and hard to navigate, issues that have particularly plagued healthcare organizations in America. While sitting down with the McKinsey on Healthcare podcast, Datavant CEO Pete McCabe lamented the inaccessibility of clear and unified personal health data. “Nobody has a full picture of my health data, not even me,” McCabe said. “There is a complexity and fragmentation in the US that you don’t see anywhere else in the world.”

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Interoperability to Meet Consumer Demands

McCabe’s frustrations point to patients’ larger issues with healthcare data management, particularly in the United States. Patients expect to have easy and open access to their full health records. They also want the ability to share that information as they see fit with other healthcare providers. Why can’t health records be as easy to check as, for example, bank statements?

Interoperability aims to make that fluid exchange of information possible with the patient and between institutions. Late last year, the Principal Advisor of Federal Healthcare at World Wide Technology, Tony Thornton, identified interoperability as an “absolute need.” “In healthcare, you could have two healthcare entities right next to each other and not be able to share information,” Thornton told This Week in Health IT. “And that just doesn’t make sense.”

In the United States, interoperability will get a major boost at the start of 2022 with the Final Rule of the 21st Century Cures Act. This will expand the requirements placed on American healthcare organizations to share information with other providers. Learn more about these additions from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.

Accounting for Physician Fatigue in Healthcare Data Analytics

Another ongoing issue healthcare organizations will need to better address in 2022 is physician burnout. With overcrowding hospitals and the unique stresses of telehealth, physicians find themselves more strained than ever before. Exacerbating that problem are EHRs and other software that make it difficult to input and access information. Any emerging software in healthcare data analytics will need to consider (and hopefully relieve) that burnout.

Lightbeam Health president Jerry Shultz thinks the answer partially lies in “providing easy-to-use technology at the point of care that surfaces the right patient data and insights.” At Programmers, we also discussed the issue of physician burnout with Diagnoss CEO Abboud Chaballout. He believes that automated systems can help physicians navigate EHRs, and this streamlined experience will remove one of their major stresses.

Final Thoughts

2022 looks to be another year full of change for the healthcare industry. In data analytics, expect a further shift towards interoperability and solutions that account for clinicians strained for time. Meanwhile, healthcare informatics aims to leverage AI in data processing to promote better patient outcomes.

Programmers regularly discusses emerging technology and user demands in healthcare SaaS. For example, we recently broke down the five most critical factors for personal health record (PHR) software. Additionally, we help healthcare organizations every day to modernize their systems and develop new digital products. Contact us today to begin streamlining processes and exceeding consumer expectations.