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How to navigate big data in healthcare

Kenneth Corbin | Nov. 26, 2014
Kaiser Permanente CMIO John Mattison cautions healthcare organizations to take a hard look at the way they approach data to ensure that health information is an asset, not a liability. He also cites the need for a new role: a health data concierge.

"Not really," Mattison says. "We need to have subject matter expertise."

New Role Needed: Health Data Concierge
Ideally, then, it would be a team effort that would involve tech-savvy data experts working alongside the practitioners who had a hand in creating the datasets. And the various pools of health data would have subject-matter experts who could serve as a point person to help researchers, developers and others interpret that information and use it appropriately.

"What I propose is there should be a data concierge," Mattison says, describing someone who knows the context of the datasets and their origins, and can serve as a resource "to prevent false conclusions from being drawn."

"When you pool the data it's really easy to misinterpret the data you're not familiar with," he says. "You really need to know where the data has been from source-generation."


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