Premier embeds analytics for better healthcare insights

Premier Inc. is an alliance of approximately 3,600 U.S. hospitals and 120,000 other providers. Their solution, PremierConnect Enterprise, brings together healthcare data management and analytics technologies into one platform, giving customers access to cutting-edge business intelligence, without the infrastructure cost. Premier embeds Tableau Server into their solution, encouraging self-service analytics across the healthcare space.

Premier has “a mission to transform healthcare.” To support this mission, the company embeds Tableau Server into their PremierConnect Enterprise solution, helping healthcare organizations get seamless access to data.

Premier gathers data from insurance companies, electronic health record systems (EHR), and more. In Tableau, they can present their customers with a single source of truth from multiple data sources.

Premier's customers access dashboards over Tableau Server, where they can see an overview of business processes, and easily drill down into a specific challenge or concern. With self-service analytics, Premier enables business intelligence, while giving customers control over their own data.

Tableau: How do your customers react to using Tableau in PremierConnect Enterprise?
Rush Shah, Product Manager, Analytics Factory: I think one of the big things PremierConnect Enterprise customers really like about Tableau is the ability to now do three or four different kinds of analytics. So they're really investigating their own healthcare markets of their region. And having geospatial capabilities or visualizations has been a boon to them.

We use Tableau in an OEM capacity, and our customers are fully aware. We've always thought of rebranding Tableau, but we don't see any need for rebranding it. We feel like the product speaks for itself, and we are leveraging the product.

Tableau: What inspired you to create PremierConnect Enterprise?
Rush: So we are creating their data warehouse on our managed data platform, with really large health organizations.

Data management and data warehousing is where the big lift is, it's where the hard stuff is. Especially in healthcare where there are so many clinical terminologies, where there is master data issues, you're getting data from insurance company in a certain way, you're getting data from your EHR, electronic health record system in a certain way, you have a different decision support system—and all of them are manifesting data in a different way.

So you have to bring all of it together, create master data for your patients, for your care providers.

So we believe that we can help healthcare organizations do that better. And then we can give them tools like Tableau to basically create analytics themselves.

Tableau: What is the impact?
Rush: You can look at them and you can just describe the facts, or you could look at them and create a ways to see where you can improve your performance, where you can improve the performance of the doctors, where you can give tools to your care providers to understand what's happening at an aggregated summary high level, and then allow them to drill down, laser focus on the problem itself.

What we have done is really narrowed down the distance between the analyst or between the nurse or the care provider or the care manager and the data. That distance is now rapidly disappearing. And that I think is the right momentum.

We have really narrowed down the distance between the analyst and the data. That distance is now rapidly disappearing. And that, I think, is the right momentum.

Tableau: How would you describe the benefits of self service?
Rush: We believe that that analytics can be done very well at the department level, by the analyst, by people who are close to that data, by people who are close to that business problem.

And where we like tools like Tableau is that it is an extremely user-friendly, intuitive tool that can be used for analytics.

Tableau: Has Tableau changed the way that your customers interact with data?
Rush: I would say one of the things that our customers or PremierConnect Enterprise customers have gained a lot is adapting themselves to a visual way of thinking.

The BI communities are reshaping themselves or they are adapting to this changing environments, and they are trying to become more focused on the analytical problem with respect to the business's problems. It's where you want to take your business and how you're going to achieve that is the difficult part.

And so a lot of our customers now have the right tools in place, the right data platform in PremierConnect Enterprise, the right Tableau tool to help them really march forward towards those goals. And they are incredibly well aligned now to do that.

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