Health IT

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital enters big data market with new startup

There are few more ubiquitous buzz phrases today in American business — and healthcare in particular — than “big data.” In healthcare, developing the analytics to draw meaningful conclusions out of mountains of data like electronic medical records and claims information will almost certainly become an increasingly important — and lucrative — area for companies […]

There are few more ubiquitous buzz phrases today in American business — and healthcare in particular — than “big data.”

In healthcare, developing the analytics to draw meaningful conclusions out of mountains of data like electronic medical records and claims information will almost certainly become an increasingly important — and lucrative — area for companies in the health IT industry.

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Now, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center is jumping into the big data game with the formation of a new startup, called QI Healthcare, which has been founded to commercialize technology developed at the renowned children’s hospital.

QI Healthcare has been launched with a $400,000 investment from Cincinnati Children’s and nonprofit, state-supported economic development group CincyTech, according to a statement from CincyTech.

The startup will use the cash to boost its sales and marketing, and product development efforts. The company also recently hired a CEO, John Atkinson, who’s previously worked at health technology companies including WebMD and SourceMedical.

QI Healthcare’s first product is called Surgical Outcomes Collection System (SOCS), which has been in use at Cincinnati Children’s for more than a year.

The SOCS application aggregates data from various hospital systems, including electronic medical records, to enable “institution-wide analyses of cases to identify opportunities to improve patient care,” according to the statement.

“Before SOCS, we spent countless hours manually gathering data,” said Dr. Paul Ryckert, senior vice president of medical operations at Cincinnati Children’s and a developer of QI’s technology. “SOCS improves the process through automation and enhanced analytics — and it frees up clinical resources to focus on quality improvement.”

Much of the need for hospitals to better understand and analyze their data stems from a movement toward a pay-for-performance model in healthcare, such as the model that’s associated with accountable care organizations.