By Louise Ashton
Blog 4 January 2022

Inhealthcare is helping providers and commissioners to analyse near real-time NHS data about patients and pathways to boost operational and strategic decision-making. The company has built a ‘data lake’ to enable new views into the growing amounts of data generated by NHS remote patient monitoring services. The online repository is securely hosted at AWS and conforms to the highest levels of data security and protection.

The move is in line with the government’s ambitious plans to harness the potential of data, while maintaining the highest standards of privacy and ethics, to help the NHS rebuild from the pandemic and address the long-term challenges facing the health and social care sector.

The data lake is fed with multiple types of raw data generated by NHS remote monitoring activities – such as vital signs readings, questionnaire responses and other workflow activity – and updated in near real-time. The software architecture is fully compatible with business analytics services such as Microsoft Power BI, Amazon QuickSight and Tableau with no technical hurdles.

Inhealthcare has created two views into the data lake – operational and strategic.

NHS providers can view operational data including patient information and can enter their own search queries to see their patient cohort in a way that makes sense to them. They might want to know which patients have had red alerts, are about to breach their thresholds or have breached them three times or more. This enables providers to stratify levels of risk within their cohort and improve patient management.

NHS commissioners can see strategic data such as how efficiently a pathway is being delivered without the need to access any patient identifiable information. This strategic view can help commissioners to identify productivity improvements and benchmark their performance against other NHS organisations.

NHS commissioners can see strategic data such as how efficiently a pathway is being delivered without the need to access any patient identifiable information. This strategic view can help commissioners to identify productivity improvements and benchmark their performance against other NHS organisations.

The strategic view also offers significant value for health research. NHS organisations might be running lots of different analyses to gain insights in the best decisions to make in certain situations. Data scientists can use the data lake to single out weighting factors in inputs that trigger outputs and apply these machine learning rules to patient cohorts to identify those at risk of breaches.

Bryn Sage, chief executive of Inhealthcare, said: “It is a common problem in our sector that many remote monitoring systems are closed and unwilling or unable to share access to underlying data with the NHS, even though this data is owned by the NHS. We recognise the enormous value for NHS in data reporting believe it will become essential for delivering successful innovation at scale in health and social care. NHS providers and commissioners will be able to use our data lake to unlock operational and strategic benefits to improve outcomes for patients.”

The software architecture is partitioned according to NHS organisation so users can only see their own data. It is scalable and offers compute capability so if one NHS organisation has a heavy workload and is submitting complex queries, it would not impact others.

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