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How do I become a business analyst in healthcare domain?

Business Analyst Healthcare

The introduction of advanced data-creation technologies has led to an increase in the volume of electronic health data. This in turn opens the door to the widespread use of clinical analytics to improve healthcare, risk management and patient outcomes.

Healthcare business analytics aims to increase and improve the efficiency and profitability of healthcare institutions by assessing their data management, financial performance and services. The post normally requires at least a Bachelor's degree in business administration, healthcare management or a related field. Certification works wonders for those who want to improve their qualifications in this field.

Why is the demand for business analysts in the healthcare sector growing?

The rapid growth of the healthcare sector and advances in medicine, coupled with the organisational culture that has evolved over the years, have led to an increased demand for business analyst healthcare  in these organisations. It is almost common for every healthcare provider or leading company to have a regular expert or team of experts in business analytics.

Outsourcing of healthcare projects

When companies outsource healthcare IT projects, especially in India and Russia, they need technically qualified professionals, such as healthcare business analysts, who are also well versed in healthcare. "I see a shift from technical roles to intermediary roles," says Alexander Nepomnyashchuk, who works as a program manager at Luxoft, a Russian IT company in Bellevue, Washington, and sees the role of analysts growing in the US.

The quest for efficiency

Even companies that don't outsource need business analysts to create processes that identify how technology and the latest techniques can make a company successful, not just take money.

The business analyst's workflow

In the healthcare industry, the business analyst's responsibility starts with defining a problem or highlighting an area for improvement, such as operational costs. After this stage, business analysts working in a large team can split into teams and simplify the situation to manageable issues, such as reducing purchasing costs or reducing staff overtime.

The next step is to conduct a survey and collect data from the business analysts. For example, business analysts in the healthcare sector who want to reduce purchasing costs can approach suppliers and negotiate bulk purchases that can be spread across multiple sites.

Training requirements

Recent studies on global job portals such as monster.com and Indeed.com show that companies prefer candidates with a four-year degree in computer science, business or healthcare administration. Some institutions offer business degrees with a focus on healthcare management, and in these programmes students can study healthcare management and business analytics. These include courses in financial management, facility operations and healthcare quality assurance.

Those wishing to become healthcare business analysts can focus on sector-specific issues by taking courses on business cases of interest. Candidates can also undertake internships in the medical and health care sector to gain the necessary knowledge of health care services. Candidates may need to know and read compliance-related literature (healthcare regulatory standards) and learn how to create informative online content for patients.

Job description

A business analyst's job starts with modeling how difficult or easy it is to improve a particular area, such as transaction pricing. At this point, analysts can break into teams and break down the scenario into manageable parts, such as reducing employee overtime or lowering supply prices. The analysts then perform the analysis and collect the data. After the analysis, the business analysts review the results and look for possible solutions. Analysts may use computer software or mathematical models to control variables such as how reducing overtime affects the level of service provided to patients.

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