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IBM - FEATURED ARTICLES

October 27, 2011

New IBM Software Targets Patient Care at Reduced Cost

By Ashok Bindra, TMCnet Contributor

This week at the Business Analytics Forum in Las Vegas, technology giant IBM (News - Alert) has released a new big data analysis software aimed at the healthcare industry. IBM said that the new software will help healthcare providers and payers improve patient care and reduce costs. According to IBM, it uses content analytics similar to what is found in IBM's Watson technology.


Seton Healthcare Family is the first client to adopt and use the technology, called IBM Content and Predictive Analytics for Healthcare. The solution will allow healthcare organizations to extract relevant clinical information from vast amounts of patient data to better analyze the past, understand the present, and predict future outcomes.

By combining IBM's Watson technology with industry solutions offerings, Seton intends to focus the new content and predictive analytics solution on the root causes of hospital readmissions, and ways it can decrease preventable multiple hospital visits, said IBM.  

According to the New England Journal of Medicine, one in five patients suffer from preventable readmissions, which represents $17.4 billion of the current $102.6 billion medicare budget.  Beginning in 2012, hospitals will be penalized for high readmission rates with reductions in Medicare discharge payments, said IBM.

In a statement, Charles J. Barnett, FACHE, president and CEO of Seton Healthcare Family said, “IBM Content and Predictive Analytics for Healthcare uses the same type of natural language processing as IBM Watson, enabling us to leverage our unstructured information in new ways not possible before.” He added, “With this solution, we can access an integrated view of relevant clinical and operational information to drive more informed decision making. For example, by predicting readmission candidates, we can reduce costly and preventable readmissions, decrease mortality rates, and ultimately improve the quality of life for our patients.”

According to IBM, the new software transforms raw information into healthcare insight quickly by revealing trends, patterns, deviations and predicting the probability of outcomes, allowing organizations to derive insight in minutes versus weeks or months, or not at all. As a result, healthcare professionals can find more effective ways to care for high-risk patients, provide safer patient care, and develop new models for reimbursement for quality care.

IBM is offering new content and predictive solution services through its Business Analytics and Optimization initiatives, which includes a new center of competence for UIMA-based text analysis solutions. This center of competence draws on resources from IBM Global Services, IBM Software Lab Services, and the IBM jStart emerging technology team. 

IBM Content and Predictive Analytics for Healthcare is optimized to run on IBM Power Systems, which are designed for high throughput and complex analysis of structured and unstructured data. 


Ashok Bindra is a veteran writer and editor with more than 25 years of editorial experience covering RF/wireless technologies, semiconductors and power electronics. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell



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