How has big data changed the face of healthcare?

Big data has had a profound impact on the healthcare industry. When looking at the way the industry functions, you may be interested by the number of ways in which big data has made its mark. These advancements can be split across three main areas; the capture, storage and analytics of data. As a result of this impact, the demand for big data specialists has been affected.

Data Capture – Apps & Mobile Technology

The advancement of apps in everyday life has become inescapable, and the healthcare industry isn’t immune to this phenomenon. Applications on your phone or device provide a quick and easy way to input and record data, saving users a great deal of time. Apps such as MyFitnessPal allow you to scan a food barcode to create a daily food diary.

One of the most accessible platforms for apps to flourish is through smartphones. It’s incredibly easy to find a large range of apps that promise to help improve your fitness by tracking how many steps you’ve walked. The iPhone, for example, tracks this data in the background.

And it’s not just smartphones that offer this service; numerous brands and products, such as Fitbits, Garmin and Vioactive, are designed to map your fitness. These devices also measure your heart rate and can gear you towards a healthier lifestyle. Whereas 10 years ago we would have had to rely on a physical note pad to log our food intake, these devices make tracking your fitness and monitoring eating habits much easier.

There are now a huge array of devices available that offer a simple way to track your health. With consumer demand at an all-time high, specialists who are skilled at capturing big data are finding themselves in high demand.

Data Storage & Analytics

As well as having a huge consumer commercial pull, the rise in big data has provided an extremely useful tool for healthcare professionals, who are able to use it to improve resources. Engineers and analysts are now able to store patient information on programmes using tools such as Hadoop and Azure, allowing a quick, easy and reliable storage format to store patient profiles.

Further to this, technologies such as PowerBI, Qlikview, Tableau allow dashboards and graphs to be created. Therefore data can be analysed to predict trends using a varied range of data that’s been acquired. These advancements in technology give healthcare professionals a better insight, and creates greater demand for a varied range of engineers and analysts with a wealth of specialist skills.

As noted in Real's Salary Survey, “with so much data being created every day, companies are seeking experienced professionals that have the skills required to organise and collect that information, as well as those that can extract the most valuable data”. Companies are looking to harness the data they have at their disposal, in order to improve on services and patient care. With advancements in big data creating such a vast array of specialist roles, the range of skill demand is extremely varied.

Whether you’re an employer or a professional seeking work, here at Real we can help you to ensure your big data needs are fulfilled. At Real, we pride ourselves on linking an impressive pool of talent with a respected portfolio of companies. If you would like to find out how we can help you, click here to contact us.

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