Electronic health tool aims to improve personalized care

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Aug. 12, 2013

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University of Notre Dame researchers have developed a system that uses electronic health records and big data analytics to assess a patient’s risk for disease and help physicians create personalized health care plans.

Nitesh Chawla, PhD, associate professor of computer science and engineering at Notre Dame, and doctoral student Darcy Davis developed what they are calling the Collaborative Assessment and Recommendation Engine. The system applies big data analytics, based on information from other patients with similar health risks and lifestyles, to a patient’s medical record to create personalized disease risk profiles and care plans. The system was awarded a U.S. patent and will be piloted this year.

Chawla said the tool gives physicians the ability to hand patients a list of health risks and recommendations for lifestyle changes to help mitigate those risks. He said the system can improve preventive care, potentially reduce readmission rates, and boost personalized and population health. Chawla said it also can help facilitate the meaningful use of EHRs.

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