By Paul James
With an avalanche of data from external sources and the demand for real-time operational insight, effective data governance has become mission critical.
Following are six critical steps that data stewards should be able to undertake—with a quality Enterprise Master Patient Index (EMPI) in a hospital or health system, or with a Master Data Management (MDM) solution in state and local government—in order to create and maintain the highest-quality, “golden view” of the patient or citizen.
- Assess the quality
It’s crucial to gain a good understanding of the quality of the data that is available to you and to understand the source of any limitations. You may, for example, have systems where the data is gathered via forms that are transcribed. Transcription means errors may creep in. If, for example, information is being gathered via phone, a name may be heard and entered incorrectly, or “15 Main Street” may sound like “50 Main Street.”
- Integrate your data
Your organization needs high quality insights, and this means integrating disparate information to build a “golden view” of the patient or citizen that brings the data together. This involves:
- Maximizing benefits, minimizing cost
- Implementing data priorities
- Implementing integrations in line with rate of change; real-time, overnight batch, or once a month
- Identify the best match
Explore how the data will interact between systems, how it will blend to create the golden record of each patient or citizen, giving you a more complete and accurate picture. This process also gives you the opportunity to discover relationships hidden inside your existing data sources.
- Manage ongoing changes
From this point forward, you’re continually assessing the data and stewarding it for maximum success. Data is ever in flux, with new patients or citizens, changes of address, and changes in your organizational systems. It’s necessary to have the right processes and technology and to establish the business rules to maintain the quality of your data in real-time.
- Optimize your data
If you only use internal data, your level of quality is capped. By using third-party reference sets, you can achieve a much richer data set.
There are three ways that the use of third-party sources can help improve your golden record:
- Verify Information
- Enrich information
- Access brand new information
- Share information downstream
To realize the true value of your newly developed golden record, it’s important to efficiently push that information back out to the source systems in your organization. If you have a high degree of confidence in a particular data field that has come from a source system (for example, you know the billing system already has accurate address information), then you should be able to implement an automated business rule that pushes that address information back out to all the other systems in the organization.
To read more about how to execute each of these six steps at your hospital or government organization, click one of the buttons below: