Big Data. Bandwidth. Paradigm. Analytics?
It’s almost universally accepted that the first three have crossed over into buzzword territory and are in danger of losing any real meaning (if they haven’t already done so.) But is the term “analytics” heading down the same road?
We’re not saying analytics aren’t important. In fact, they are critical for healthcare organizations facing the onslaught of changes resulting from MACRA, increased oversight and the rush to value-based care.
But it’s important for us to define our terms. “Analytics” does not mean the same thing in all situations. In order to get maximum value, you need to make sure the analytics solution you’re using is appropriate for the task you are trying to accomplish. If it isn’t, you’re not likely to achieve your desired goals.
We spoke with one prospect recently who said, “Analytics is off the table. We already have so many analytics products. We don’t need any more.”
His situation may not be very different from your organization where you have no doubt deployed a number “analytics solutions.” You may have a large, expensive enterprise system in place. But if you’re like many organizations, those analytics programs are often focused on “bigger picture” issues like population health. While that is an extremely important initiative, as a compliance organization, you still need to leverage data for other operational goals like improving revenue flow and minimizing risk.
You may also have a number of system-specific analytics programs and visualization solutions that can provide valuable insight. Unfortunately, although these applications fall under the broad heading of “analytics,” they don’t provide answers that relate directly to your set of issues.
The end result is that even though your organization may possess powerful “analytics” solutions, you can often be left hungering for “analytics” that help you focus on your key risk areas. You may have trouble getting directly to the raw data you need but instead have to rely on filtered data provided by someone in an IT group. Such data sets compiled outside the compliance group can reflect a different purpose from the one you need.
Actionable analytics requires iterative refinement of available data with subject matter experts who can pull out the “learnings” that are real and worthwhile. To accomplish that you certainly need “analytics,” but analytics that use raw billing and coding data to uncover risk areas before they can cause reputational and financial damage. These types of “analytics” solutions are much more specific. They are built on an analytics platform, but they are actually applications.
When looking for an analytics application best suited for risk and compliance management, here are five things you need.