AnyCare constantly seeks new ways to improve upon the analysis capabilities it provides to healthcare insurance company clients. The insurance companies rely on AnyCare to help determine new ways to improve patient care, which can then be passed along to the healthcare provider networks that insurance companies work with. By improving illness treatments and by preventing illnesses, the entire healthcare ecosystem benefits: Company employees enjoy better health; company health plan costs are lowered; and insurer payments for treatments are reduced.
Enhanced Analysis Capabilities Required to Improve Patient Healthcare
Each insurance company that works with AnyCare is interested not only in its own insurance-program analysis, but also how its results compare to other insurance programs. Being able to compile patient illness, treatment and insurance payment costs across a larger base of patients also gives the data more validity as far as assessing how patients react to each type of treatment.
But for AnyCare to give its clients the ability to analyze data set this large requires the ability to run cross-company queries for approximately five million patients within a database consisting of approximately 100 million rows. The previous system that AnyCare relied on ran too slow for such a query to be practical.
Column-Based Data Analytics Enables Fast Reporting Across Large Data Sets
To answer this challenge, AnyCare turned to a combination of technologies from Sybase and Qyte. The new data analysis system relies on Sybase IQ as the business intelligence reporting platform—featuring column-based data analytics capabilities—and Qyte RayQ as the data-mining software that enables high performance and flexibility when accessing large sets of un-aggregated data.
Sybase IQ and RayQ combine to give AnyCare the required computing power to run reports across the very large database within a few minutes. The system has this capability because RayQ creates query results quickly from the highly-compressed data in Sybase IQ. This eliminates time-consuming compression and decompression of data, and it reduces the data-exchange time between IQ and RayQ to a minimum.
AnyCare now has a business intelligence analytics solution that enables significant time savings and flexibility while conducting program quality-checks and analyzing massive data sets. Analyses that previously required hours or even multiple days to run are now completed within a short time—sometimes in as little as a few minutes. As an example, a cross-insurance company data-analysis report, which previously had to be aborted after 21 hours before completion, now runs on Sybase IQ in less than five minutes.
Since the Sybase IQ implementation, the volume of the AnyCare database has increased steadily and now includes approximately five million patients (listed anonymously for privacy protection) with complex data sets about their diagnosis, treatments and pharmaceutical prescriptions over the course of five years. This level of detail facilitates AnyCare’s ability to identify patient health trends and the effectiveness of treatment programs.
Insurance and Healthcare Providers Now Collaborate Effectively on Patient Trends
The data-management and analysis services that AnyCare delivers with the help of Sybase IQ and Qyte RayQ allows healthcare insurance companies in Germany to now collaborate more effectively with their healthcare provider networks on improving patient services. AnyCare assists the overall patient-delivery ecosystem by offering a business intelligence reporting system that analyzes large amounts of patient data to identify trends in patient diagnoses, treatments and prescriptions over many years.
With the analysis provided by AnyCare, insurers and providers can address patient illnesses more effectively. The ability to analyze patient outcomes over time allows them to proactively identify patients that might be susceptible to specific illnesses and recommend treatments that healthcare providers can deliver to potentially prevent the onset of an illness or lessen the impact and duration of an illness. In many cases, patient illnesses have been discovered early enough to reduce patient pain and discomfort as well as the amount of treatment patients have required.
The AnyCare database also identifies patient-risk groups that could benefit from specific healthcare programs as well as which insurers offer the required programs for each type of patient illness. In addition, the AnyCare analytics tool sheds light onto previously-unknown connections within patient data pools to enable new findings—not only for the enhancement of existing care programs, but also for the development of new patient-care approaches and service offerings from health insurance companies.
Help for Patients with Depression and Burn-Out Symptoms
With the help of Sybase IQ, AnyCare now has the capability to analyze approximately 400 million data sets associated with approximately five million insured people. The data analysis serves more than 80,000 people in Germany on private and governmental health insurance plans and has been particularly helpful in identifying people with the likelihood of contracting diseases related to muscular, respiratory tract and cardiovascular systems.
The flexibility of the system also allows AnyCare to analyze specific illnesses and treatments— without any limitations on the types of search filters that can be applied such as patient age, occupation, place of residence and other factors that might impact health.
AnyCare has been particularly helpful assisting insurers and their corporate employer customers in addressing employee depression and burn-out. AnyCare supplements its data-analysis services with an individual, modular-care program that includes telephone consultation, information resources and on-site-intervention. Approximately 4,000 employees have benefitted from these services while employers have reduced and stabilized insurance-premium costs by proactively helping employees with these conditions.
For patients that have already contracted an illness, the analysis capabilities provided by AnyCare allow healthcare providers to assess the success of past treatment programs. They can now determine the best course of action in terms of coverage programs for each patient.
The analytics platform can also be used for target-group analyses so that AnyCare can identify risk groups that could benefit from certain healthcare programs. The new analytics tool also sheds light onto unknown connections within patient data pools so that researchers can intuitively evaluate data. “This enables new findings—not only for the realization of existing care programs, but also for the development of new care approaches and service offerings for health insurance,” says Holger Weiss, AnyCare Data Management Team Manager.
Economic Analysis Improves Insurance Company Profit Margins
In addition to patient care benefits, the AnyCare analytics system also facilitates economic analysis so that insurance companies can assess profit margins. By enabling increased efficiency and revenue as well as decreased costs, AnyCare allows insurance companies to improve their overall level of service, which leads to further enhanced care for patients.
As an example, with the data provided by AnyCare to help improve patient care, AnyCare insurance company clients have lowered benefit payments by an average of 21 percent. Payments have been reduced particularly in the areas of hospitalization, sick pay, and daily hospital benefits. AnyCare clients experience an average value of 2,208 Euros savings within the first year.
With respect to cost stabilization, AnyCare clients have used the data mining capability to detect insured employees that were bearing an especially high risk for cost increases. In the context of data-based care management, intervention decreased the impending cost increase by 84 percent. This corresponds to a direct contribution margin benefit of 1,475 Euros per participant.
But the most important benefit that Sybase IQ provides to AnyCare is the ability to improve patient services in Germany. “With the reporting capabilities that Sybase IQ enables, researchers can analyze all data sets in relationship to other sets of data and within any context depending on the patient illness factors they are analyzing,” Weiss says. “This enables new and previously-unknown discoveries from which new illness forecast-models can be developed so that healthcare providers and insurers can prevent many illnesses. They can also provide more effective treatment to patients that have already contracted the illness.”