Articles, HIT Outcomes August 4, 2015

Accurately Predicting the Future

by Barry P Chaiken, MD

Every major sports team utilizes predictive analytics to win games. Wikipedia defines predictive analytics as, “A variety of statistical techniques from modeling, machine learning, and data mining that analyze current and historical facts to make predictions about the future, or otherwise unknown events. In business, predictive models exploit patterns found in historical and transactional data to identify risks and opportunities.”

Currently more than 91 percent of hospitals utilize electronic medical records (EMR) thanks to funding from the HITECH act. In addition, more than 75 percent of HITECH act funding-eligible professionals use EMRs. This represents an extremely rich source of data available for predictive analytics work. With the recent digitization of medical equipment and the explosion in the use of “Internet of Things” devices such as Fitbits and smart scales, data scientists possess ever increasing data to apply innovative and newly developed analytical and statistical techniques. Lastly, the decrease in the cost of computing power and data storage allows for many more scientists to “crunch” data looking for nuggets of knowledge.

Excerpts from: Accurately Predicting the Future. Health IT Outcomes. August 4, 2015


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