“All indications, from survey results, discussions with health care thought leaders, and technology suppliers, are that analytics is number 1 on the agenda for health care organizations engaging in accountable care.”

That’s the bottom line of a new report, from research firm IDC Health Insights, based on interviews with industry experts and vendors, and a survey last May of 40 hospitals and 30 insurers.

The survey found that advanced analytics (50 percent) and data warehouses (46 percent) were the highest investment priorities for accountable care. Advanced analytics includes streaming data monitoring and analysis, text mining, and social graph analysis, among other functions.

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Two-thirds of survey respondents cited identifying patients in need of management, clinical outcomes, and performance measurement and management as types of analyses they intend to conduct. Respondents also cited claims, clinical structured data and care management data as primary sources of information to identify and manage chronic patients.

Organizations are not only investing in new analytics capabilities, but modifying existing analytics technology and hiring or redeploying staff into analytic and informatics roles, according to IDC.  “As with other technology developments, providers lag health plans in their investment plans,” according to the report. “While all health care organizations are challenged with the number and complexity of I.T. priorities, hospitals have unique challenges as they complete electronic health record installations or replacements, and strive to meet the requirements of meaningful use as well as other federal and state mandates.”

The report, “Business Strategy: Analytics Leads Accountable Care Investment Priority,” costs $4,500. More information is at idc-hi.com.

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