Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Power of Small Data

Big data is the uncharted territory of our time. Vast, multiple exabyte-sized data sets are like new continents that will, upon exploration, yield insights into all manner of human affairs. This is all well and good. But in the meantime, how about applying the latest tools and techniques of Big Data to much smaller data sets, say an insurer's chronic disease patients?

Today, with high speed data exchange and processing, it is possible to comb through millions of lab tests to find the results of eligible patients, monitor their timing and values, and provide nearly instantaneous feedback to patients and providers. This is the power of Small Data.

Small data connects people with timely, meaningful insights. It is organized and visually presented to be accessible, understandable, and actionable for everyday tasks.

Small data is the right data. You shouldn't need to be a data scientist to understand or apply it for everyday tasks.

Paraphrasing Joseph C. Kvedar, MD, the Founder and Director of the Center for Connected Health, Big Data will guide policy makers, but it's Small Data that will help patients get better.

Living with and managing a chronic disease, such as chronic kidney disease, is complicated. Small Data can deliver the right information to patients and providers at the right time so that they can do the right thing.

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