Software That Saves Lives

BI software helps doctors make smart choices for patients.

1 2 3 Page 2
Page 2 of 3

"I understood how extremely fast they could make searches, and how they could combine all data in an illustrated way," he says.

For Stålhammar, the choice made sense, even though his hospital's administration used other BI applications for analyzing data. QlikView seemed to work faster than other systems, he says, and that was important, since the information is needed to make quick, informed decisions on patient care. Plus, QlikView presented information in a visual fashion that made it easy to see associations between data.

"You could see these patterns with other tools, but it was much easier with QlikView," Stålhammar says.

Predicting Outcomes

Stålhammar wanted the application to process medical tests and observations from neurosurgery patients alongside likely outcomes, to determine patterns and the best treatment protocols.

"There are a number of predictors for head injury patients. You can weigh them together to get a score, and you can do that rather early and see [whether a] patient is in danger of a bad development," Stålhammar says.

The predictors include a patient's age, cranial pressure and white blood cell counts. Taken together, those metrics can indicate potentially life-threatening complications.

Stålhammar worked with the hospital IT staff to develop the tool, turning to Johan Rylander, a solutions consultant at QlikTech, for support. Although Stålhammar's use of QlikView isn't typical, pulling together the application wasn't particularly tricky, Rylander says.

"All the data sources were already defined. Dr. Stålhammar already knew what he needed, and I helped him to translate his ideas," explains Rylander.

But challenges still arose, of course. Stålhammar wanted to display several lab results in a single chart, yet those lab results all used different scales. Those differences forced Rylander to find ways to manipulate the code to create accurate, compatible and understandable displays.

It was also a challenge to integrate pictures, which take up a lot of memory, Rylander says. To deal with that, he put in links to pictures, allowing users to call up only the images needed without putting them in the QlikView file itself.

Stålhammar first started using QlikView in 2001. But after he retired in 2007, the project lost momentum -- a fate that can befall many IT initiatives that lack a project champion to lobby for them.

1 2 3 Page 2
Page 2 of 3
7 inconvenient truths about the hybrid work trend
Shop Tech Products at Amazon