Big Data in Healthcare - Free Essay Example

Published: 2022-12-11
Big Data in Healthcare - Free Essay Example
Type of paper:  Course work
Categories:  Data analysis Information technologies
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1315 words
11 min read

In healthcare, big data refers to the adoption of technology that makes it easy to collect, store and access patient information records which has significantly improved the overall health outcomes (Fleissner, Jasti, Ales, & Thomas, 2014). The adoption of the internet and digitization of healthcare activities has significantly increased the overall adoption of data management methods to improve the overall application and use of stored information in service delivery (Sarsfield, 2009). Big data application in healthcare has led to the adoption of more precise and personalized care due to an increase in the overall patient detailed information as well as the population data that makes it possible for the healthcare providers to determine how the patient will respond to a treatment and also identify potential patient risks and advice the patient on the possible prevention methods (Fleissner et al., 2014). The ease in identifying potential data risks in healthcare has been made possible through the ease in identifying patient patterns which makes it easy to customize patient care.

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Availability of digital data of patients which were previously inaccessible makes it easy for healthcare organizations to provide more patient-centric care programs (Fleissner et al., 2014). Besides, information on different healthcare treatment methods makes it easy for healthcare providers to adopt an evidence-based care approach (Fleissner et al., 2014). Patient data digital storage makes it easy for the healthcare providers to develop effective patient health tracking which is essential in identifying potential problems before they become critical which makes it easy for the healthcare providers to respond to them, hence, reducing care cost and patient risk (Fleissner et al., 2014). For instance, collected patient data can identify a developing patient cardiovascular problem based on collected patient information which makes it easy for the healthcare providers to advise patients on the type of care which will be useful in their situation. Besides, the collected patient information reduces overall risk due to the wrong diagnosis by helping the physicians to cross-check patient previous healthcare problems and make the right diagnosis.

Job Description for a Data Governance Officer

Purpose and Scope

A good job description should be able to identify the officer requirements for a healthcare organization in terms of qualifications and the roles and their responsibilities towards implementing a data governance program (Sarsfield, 2009). The success of an organization seeking to harness the benefits of using big data in healthcare settings depends highly on how a data governance program is implemented to tailor the organization data needs with the currently available data (Sarsfield, 2009). A data governance officer role in a healthcare setting is within an organization information strategy. The data governance officer is critical in directing the overall implementation of big data systems as well as establishing the best practices and providing guidance within a broad scope of systems and data sources.

Roles and Responsibilities

Establishment of an implementation roadmap for the healthcare organization and establish the strategic objectives for the healthcare organization and govern the organization information based possibilities.

Developing and managing a data governance framework with the aim of maximizing data quality and application within the organization. The data governance framework should also establish data protection standards by modifying the user behavior policies, governance metrics, processes, principles and standards within the organization.

The data governance officer will be responsible for defining roles related to data governance and create a clear accountability plan for all the healthcare organization information systems.

A data governance officer should ensure that key data protection strategies are well defined and communicated to all healthcare staff within the organization.

The data governance officer establishes an inventory of the organization information maps and authority systems.

The data governance officer is responsible for overseeing the updates of the data governance road map.

Lastly, the data governance officer has a role in preventing redundancy by coordinate external data sources and also identifying new opportunities on the use of information assets to maximize effectiveness.

  1. Desired Skills and Qualifications
  2. Knowledge of data quality and data protection procedures.
  3. Knowledge of data governance best practices and regulatory requirements.
  4. Excellent consulting skills, change management concepts and performance measurement design.
  5. High personal and professional integrity with the ability to uphold good work ethics.
  6. Bachelors or Masters in Information Management or Computer Science.
  7. Data Governance Council
  8. IT Technical Support
  9. User Groups
  10. IT Council
  11. Data Custodian
  12. Data Governance Council
  13. IT Technical Support
  14. User Groups
  15. IT Council
  16. Data Custodian


Functions, Relationships, and Responsibilities

The data governance structure is divided into three main substructures with the aim at establishing different functional roles of the stakeholders involved in the healthcare organization big data systems.

Strategic Function

The strategic level of the data governance structure is fundamental to the success of implementing an effective big data system in a healthcare organization. The strategic level establishes the alignment of the organisational strategic goals with the big data processes and products (Sarsfield, 2009). The strategic level is made by the data governance council and the IT council which are key determiners in creating the overall big data strategic plan for the healthcare organization (HealthCatalyst. 2016). It is essential to align the big data systems with the organization vision which is critical towards promoting continuous organization growth in an environment where big data applications are being created.

Tactical Function

The tactical function level is directly below the strategic functional level, and its responsibility is to establish short term action plans. The functional tactical team is responsible for implementing the strategies created by the IT council as well as the data governance council (Smallwood, 2014). The tactical functional level of the data governance framework is made by the data custodian who is responsible for ensuring that all the systems are operational and also facilitates the implementation of standards to ensure data safety (HealthCatalyst. 2016). The IT and the data governance council receive counsel from the data custodians who are more informed on the best practices and systems management on different possibilities and applications of big data within the healthcare organization (Sarsfield, 2009). Besides, the tactical functional level is responsible for creating roles and responsibilities of the IT technical staff who oversee the daily operationalization of the big data systems by monitoring the processes and systems.

Operational Function

The operational function is key to the sustenance of the entire big data system within a healthcare organization and coordinates the collection and dissemination of data to the different healthcare organization departments (Smallwood, 2014). The operational functional level involves both healthcare providers and the IT technical staff who continuously provide the required support to the entire user groups within the healthcare organization (HealthCatalyst. 2016).

Standardization of Data and Compliance with Internal and External Data Requirements

The data governance structure provides a clear instructional and communication system between different stakeholders which is crucial in the standardization of the processes and data in the system. The various functional levels have different responsibilities and roles which are clear and specific which makes it easy to manage the overall internal and external systems (Smallwood, 2014). The data governance structure can improve the overall standardization process by creating rules and regulations that can improve the standardization of processes which is critical in enhancing security (HealthCatalyst. 2016). The IT technical staff and the data custodian play a significant role in ensuring compliance of all IT regulations (Smallwood, 2014). The data governance council implements strategies that are recommended and approved from the IT council which is crucial in ensuring compliance and standardized systems for the healthcare organization (Sarsfield, 2009).


Fleissner, B, Jasti, K, Ales, J, & Thomas, R. (2014). The importance of data governance in healthcare. White Paper. Encore. Retrieved from

HealthCatalyst. (2016). Effective healthcare data governance: how one hospital system is managing its data assets to improve outcomes. The University of Kansas Hospital. Retrieved from

Sarsfield, S. (2009). The Data Governance Imperative: A Business Strategy for Corporate Data. Ely: IT Governance Pub.

Smallwood, R. F. (2014). Information governance: Concepts, strategies, and best practices. New York: Wiley.

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