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The Relevance of Data Warehousing and Data Mining in the Field of Evidence-based Medicine to Support Healthcare Decision Making

Authors: Nevena Stolba, A Min Tjoa


Evidence-based medicine is a new direction in modern healthcare. Its task is to prevent, diagnose and medicate diseases using medical evidence. Medical data about a large patient population is analyzed to perform healthcare management and medical research. In order to obtain the best evidence for a given disease, external clinical expertise as well as internal clinical experience must be available to the healthcare practitioners at right time and in the right manner. External evidence-based knowledge can not be applied directly to the patient without adjusting it to the patient-s health condition. We propose a data warehouse based approach as a suitable solution for the integration of external evidence-based data sources into the existing clinical information system and data mining techniques for finding appropriate therapy for a given patient and a given disease. Through integration of data warehousing, OLAP and data mining techniques in the healthcare area, an easy to use decision support platform, which supports decision making process of care givers and clinical managers, is built. We present three case studies, which show, that a clinical data warehouse that facilitates evidence-based medicine is a reliable, powerful and user-friendly platform for strategic decision making, which has a great relevance for the practice and acceptance of evidence-based medicine.

Keywords: data mining, data warehousing, decision-support systems, evidence-based medicine.

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