Pushing Big Data to rapidly advance patient care

By | September 4, 2018
computer screen with lab reports around it

(MHealth Lab)

Today, the breakneck pace of biomedical discovery is outstripping clinicians’ ability to incorporate this new knowledge into practice. Charles Friedman, of the U-M Medical School, and his colleagues recently wrote about a possible way technology offers a solution for moving research out of journals and into the clinic faster.

Their approach focuses on harnessing the power of technology to enable health systems to put “local” evidence from electronic health records into computable forms and use this in combination with published reviewed evidence to improve health outcomes.

The Medical School’s Department of Learning Health Sciences has created a computer platform called the Knowledge Grid, that stores computable knowledge in digital libraries and then uses that knowledge to generate patient-specific advice. “The value of Big Data is to generate Big Knowledge,” says Friedman. “The power of Big Data is to provide better models. If all those models do is sit in journal articles, no one’s going to be any healthier.”