Ah, perfect data! How we love you!
OK, we all know that perfect data is an oxymoron. Usually, we are happy with “pretty good data.” But in the Healthcare Analytics field “pretty good data” usually means data from Clinical Trials where everything is set and charted in a controlled environment with known entities. This data is “pretty good” because it is pretty clean, but is not ideal at all for understanding real world possibilities and getting a deeper understanding of what is more realistic.
Enter the realm of “real-world” patient data. Even with the strides in Electronic Health Records, this may be the dirtiest data you’ve ever seen. Just like panning for gold or searching through a thrift shop, if you get good enough, you can find those valuable pieces that give you insight and meaning. Just like panning or thrifting, it takes perseverance. And effort. And time. And patience. And practice.
But the payoff isn’t just a hunk of metal or a 1940’s dress, but a way to improve the lives of humans. So they can live longer to do the activities they enjoy. Like panning for gold or… well you get the idea.