Thursday, 30 July 2015 16:44

Sydney Adventist Hospital provides access to unstructured data Featured

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Sydney Adventist Hospital Sydney Adventist Hospital

Sydney Adventist Hospital in Wahroonga, the largest private hospital in NSW, is using a new Australian developed text analysis tool to provide faster access to text based records.

The HLA Text Analytics system provides doctors and other clinicians with fast access to large volumes of unstructured  so they can deliver improved patient care.

“Over 80% of health data is stored as text, which requires search, retrieval, coding and analysis to be performed manually,” said the hospital’s CIO Chris Williams. “With so much data there is the risk that costs and delays will result. With demands by clinicians, health professionals, registries, research and management for more information, we made it a priority to find a solution.

Following extensive demonstrations and pilot projects with a team from Sydney software development company Health Language Analytics (HLA), the HLA Text Analytics solution was selected to be implemented on hospital wide clinical documentation.

“We had our department heads, clinicians and technology staff asses the HLA platform and perform various tasks to ensure that it was robust, flexible and had the capacity to expand its library automatically as new terminology and expressions were found in documents,” said Williams. “Tests on 57 cancer queries showed an accuracy of 96%, and we know that can be improved with tuning.

“In one of the tasks we set, we provided 8,000 histopathology records to HLA and requested that all prostate diagnoses be found and retrieved. The automatic process took just a few minutes, with greater than 95% accuracy, which usually would have taken many staff weeks to compile.

“We expect that the HLA text search analytics solution will be made available to all hospital staff as well as visiting clinicians and researchers.”

HLA CEO Professor Jon Patrick said: “We are very excited to be working with Chris and the team in delivering the speediest, most accurate and cost effective health text data analytics tools. All staff involved in the evaluation and test processes were enthusiastic and keen to have access to such a vast pool of important health data.”

Professor Patrick also acknowledged the support given by AusIndustry’s Commercialisation Australia in bringing its products to market. It made it just in time – Commercialisation Australia, a $200 million a year grants program for startups, was axed in last year’s budget.

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Graeme Philipson

Graeme Philipson is senior associate editor at iTWire. He is one of Australia’s longest serving and most experienced IT journalists. He is author of the only definitive history of the Australian IT industry, ‘A Vision Splendid: The History of Australian Computing.’

He has been in the high tech industry for more than 30 years, most of that time as a market researcher, analyst and journalist. He was founding editor of MIS magazine, and is a former editor of Computerworld Australia. He was a research director for Gartner Asia Pacific and research manager for the Yankee Group Australia. He was a long time weekly IT columnist in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, and is a recipient of the Kester Award for lifetime achievement in IT journalism.

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