In this day and age, patients are highly savvy when it comes to playing a part in their own wellbeing. They are well-acquainted with the plethora of healthcare services available in the market today. This includes things such as home genetic testing, wearables, mobile health apps, IoT devices, etc. 

Now, although these two trends may seem disparate at first, they are connected by one thing — the exponential expansion of medical data. 

With all this data coming in at an overwhelming rate, there is a greater need for healthcare businesses to harness its potential. Doing this will not only help healthcare leaders make better sense of all the data congregated within their facilities, but it will help the entire healthcare fraternity at a global level and ameliorate outcomes as a whole.

How to grow your healthcare business with better data management

In this piece, we will be looking at a few data management best practices. These will help healthcare leaders target growth and identify opportunities to increase their business’s bottom line.

1. Leverage automation to streamline workflows

Today, one of the topmost challenges when it comes to healthcare is streamlining workflows. Discerning how to congregate, store and manage healthcare data from disparate sources. Then determining how to make sense of all that data to extract insights. Doing this effectively helps formulate policies, furnish the best possible care options for patients, and run healthcare facilities more efficiently.

This is where automation comes into play. Specifically, automated healthcare solutions driven by progressive machine learning (ML) algorithms. When used alongside cloud-based platforms, they can give healthcare leaders the power to harness the data made available in the endlessly connected healthcare realm and use it to its optimal potential.

From billing a patient’s routine doctor visit to scheduling appointments with zero human intervention to conducting research on new medication modules and therapies—it’s data alone that helps an organization drive intelligent decisions and defines its goals. 

Even then, conventional models of managing data for development, research and patient care fall short of the tools and resources required to make full use of globally available information from sources of all kinds. 

Automate manual tasks and other processes within your organization that demand less human intervention. This leaves your staff with more time to concentrate on activities that directly contribute to your business’s bottom line.

For instance, if your practice developed a custom telemedicine platform, you can enhance it by integrating an automated appointment scheduling software with the platform to save up your staff’s time so that they can focus on other important tasks that directly contribute toward bettering patient outcomes.

Automated healthcare solutions can formulate a sort of framework, not only for driving more meaning out of data but also for putting it to the right use. Therefore, this is one technology healthcare businesses should look at leveraging right away!

set your medical business up for success with a modern plan

2. Store data on a central cloud repository to make it interoperable

In recent years, a huge shift has been observed in the formulation, consumption, sharing and storage of data in the healthcare space. 

Healthcare providers have come a long way in honing their data management protocols. Right from storing all their paperwork on traditional file systems, to now embracing digitization. This has been visibly evident in the swift adoption of electronic health record (EHR) systems.

According to one recent report published by Veritis, an IT consulting firm based out of Texas, approximately 83% of the healthcare space is utilizing the Cloud at present to perform their core operations. For an industry that has long been notorious for lagging behind its contemporaries, it is surprisingly leading by example in terms of cloud adoption. 

Integrating cloud technology in your daily workflows has a two-fold advantage in healthcare. It is beneficial for both healthcare businesses and their consumers alike. 

On the business side, cloud technology can significantly cut down operational costs. At the same time, it enables providers to furnish personalized, high-quality care solutions. On the consumer side, cloud adoption can enhance engagement by giving patients access to their own healthcare information. This further leads to improved patient outcomes.

The increased interoperability of healthcare data that comes alongside cloud adoption saves time. Both providers, as well as their patients, benefit. It breaks down barriers related to a physical location that otherwise hamper access to care. 

Due to these aforestated reasons, progressive healthcare businesses should definitely be looking at integrating this state-of-the-art tech innovation within their business models if they wish to stay ahead of their industry counterparts.

3. Formulate a business plan to help improve your chances of success

A carefully formulated business plan is one of the most important tools in your arsenal. Having a plan gives the organization the ability to layout its goals and tracks progress as business begins to boom. 

Business plans generally include comprehensive information that can help ameliorate the organization’s chances of success. Some of the constituents of a typical business plan are:

  • Market analysis
  • Competitive analysis
  • Marketing
  • Customer segmentation
  • Logistics and operations plans
  • Cash flow projection
  • Long-term growth strategies

Whether you’re managing a team of hundreds or just two, you can’t always be available to make every decision yourself. 

Let your staff know that they can always reference the business plan to understand the next steps in your absence. Sharing your business plan with your employees also helps ensure that every resource is aligned with a single goal and shares the same understanding of long-term targets.

Writing a business plan can also go a long way in helping you better illuminate consumer trends and preferences, understand your competition, the market you’re operating in, potential disruptions and other insights that aren’t always visible on the surface.

These plans convey your organizational goals at a single glance, and keep your healthcare business’ information well-organized. This will help keep all of your departments and partners is on the same page.

Due to all the reasons mentioned above, having a robust business plan in place is definitely one data management best practice every healthcare organization should be adopting right away. 

Develop a management strategy around these tools

Finally, in order to target business growth effectively, healthcare businesses need to structure their data management strategy and data platforms around the needs of their consumers. 

It is also important to comprehend how you can leverage the various digital solutions available today to:

  • Connect different departments
  • Improve communication
  • Facilitate data transmittance across the organization

Growth is an ongoing process. It demands constant effort. The various elements within your business need to function as a single unit. Right from your resources and the tools you invest in, to meeting consumer expectations and planning for the future. 

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AvatarRahul Varshneya

Rahul Varshneya is the founder and President of Digital Health Consulting firm Arkenea and has written extensively about the confluence of healthcare, startup economy, and technology.