How to derive actionable insights during data integrations

November 13, 2018 Dave Brewerton

Amadeus CORE extends your health organization’s integration engine with secure and scalable Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud storage to provide a platform for data analytics. Amadeus CORE has out-of-the-box dashboards and reports that provide useful insights to improve an organization’s operational efficiency. These will help with resolving data integration issues, uncover blockages and forecast future infrastructure or service needs. All the data is queryable via APIs or a SQL interface to enable the use of third-party reporting and analytics tools.

Message characteristics and resolving data integration issues
Integration development is a relatively straightforward problem when both the source and target systems are within your control. When interfacing with a system that is outside of your control, making changes to the data is a challenging undertaking. There are two options to handle this situation, users can either adjust the interface or the receiving system. Typically the interface is the one changed, as it is the most adaptable. Integration consultants prefer to do this at the beginning of the interfacing process, as it is important to know as much as possible about the message characteristics that will flow through the interface.  

How can integration consultants deal with message types that they are not expecting?
All experienced integrators have dealt with a specification only to discover that it is either incomplete or completely inaccurate. While a specification may reveal the truth, there is no substitute for the actual raw data. It can occur that a totally unexpected message type will arrive on an interface. For instance, on a carefully configured ORU interface a Medical Document Management (MDM) might arrive. If the message type is not expected, the system is not prepared and one of three integration problems will happen:

  1. The message is sent to the error queue 

  2. The message is rejected 

  3. Worst of all, the message may be changed in an incorrect way, which leaves broken data in the target system

These issues can all be avoided by looking at the actual characteristics of the sending system prior to constructing the interface. By sending all messages from a sending system to Amadeus CORE integrators can investigate the dataset characteristics such as:

  • What are the message types a system sends? 

  • Are there Z segments? And if so what is in them? 

  • Are the coding systems expected and understood on the receiving end?

The outcome of this analysis is to understand how the source system complies with the HL7 messaging standards. 

Interfacing with Amadeus CORE

  1. Configure the sending system to send to Amadeus CORE.

  2. After we have collected enough data, analyze the body of messages and their metadata.

  3. Armed with hard facts and accurate information, construct the new interface and use the replay functionality, to play the body of messages from Amadeus CORE to prove that it worked. 

  4. Use the replay functionality again to play the stored messages through the interface to the target system.

  5. Roll the interface into production, knowing it has been thoroughly tested with the same messages that will be running through it.

Trends and operational planning
When integrating across sites, a key concern held by integration consultants is who is sending data and what does it look like? The message metadata stores within Amadeus CORE can answer this question very quickly. A dashboard built using APIs or the SQL interface can supplement the more basic levels of checking that would typically be implemented in integration toolsets. Dashboards can instantly visually expose meaningful trends that could otherwise take time to uncover. If a site starts sending unexpected message types or volumes drastically, pickup or fall off, it is necessary to dig deeper. The standard interfaces provided by Amadeus CORE ensure that whatever your favorite dashboard tool, you can turn this data into useful insights to improve operational efficiency.

Gain valuable insights to feed into capacity planning
Analysis of something simple, such as message volumes over time, can provide valuable insights to feed into capacity planning. The graph above shows messaging volumes on a daily basis over a six-month period of interfacing. Data is analyzed to understand the scope for broad-spectrum anomaly detection. With analysis to understand:

  • Why did the spike occur? 

  • Why did the volume drop immediately afterward?

Without the analysis of the data, interface consultants could have missed a flood of what was effectively garbage messages. Looking further on, the typical weekend drop diminishes and then disappears. If we have brought on a new interface with a weekend clinic, this would have explained the spike, but this now has significant implications for any scheduled down time. Amadeus CORE provides the tools to look at the simplest metadata and gain insight from it to better understand traffic trends, flow patterns, uncover blockages, improve operational efficiency and forecast infrastructure requirements.

Amadeus CORE provides out-of-the-box dashboards and reports that provide useful insights into traffic trends, message characteristics and flow patterns that will improve operational efficiency within an organization. These will help to resolve data integration issues, uncover blockages and forecast future infrastructure or service needs. All the data is queryable via APIs or a SQL interface to enable the use of third-party reporting and analytics tools.

Check out the data sheet for more information.

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