AWS Business Intelligence Blog

Lucerna Health uses Amazon QuickSight embedded analytics to help healthcare customers uncover new insights

This is a guest post by Lucerna Health. Founded in 2018, Lucerna Health is a data technology company that connects people and data to deliver value-based care (VBC) results and operational transformation.

At Lucerna Health, data is at the heart of our business. Every day, we use clinical, sales, and operational data to help healthcare providers and payers grow and succeed in the value-based care (VBC) environment. Through our HITRUST CSF® certified Healthcare Data Platform, we support payer-provider integration, health engagement, database marketing, and VBC operations.

As our business grew, we found that faster real-time analysis and reporting capabilities through our platform were critical to success. However, that was a challenge for our data analytics team, which was busier than ever developing our proprietary data engine and data model. No matter how many dashboards we built, we knew we could never keep up with user demand with our previous BI solutions. We needed a more scalable technology that could grow as our customer base continued to expand.

Embedding analytics with QuickSight

We had a rising demand for business intelligence (BI) from our customers, and we needed a better tool to help us keep pace that met our security requirements and was part of a comprehensive business associate contract (BAA) and met HIPAA and other privacy standards. We were using several other BI solutions internally for impromptu analysis and reporting, but we realized we needed a fully embedded solution to provide more automation and an integrated experience within our Healthcare Data Platform. After trying out a different solution, we discovered it wasn’t cost-effective for us. That’s when we turned our attention to AWS.

Three years ago, we decided to go all-in on AWS, implementing a range of AWS services for compute, storage, and networking. Today, each of the building blocks we have in our IT infrastructure run on AWS. For example, we use Amazon Redshift, AWS Glue, and Amazon EMR for our Spark data pipelines, data lake, and data analytics. Because of our all-in approach, we were pleased to find that AWS had a BI platform called QuickSight. QuickSight is a powerful and cost-effective BI service that offers a strong feature set including self-service BI capabilities and interactive dashboards, and we liked the idea of continuing to be all-in on AWS by implementing this service.

BI Infrastructure

One of the QuickSight’s features we were most excited about was its ability to embed analytics deep within our Healthcare Data Platform. With this solution’s embedded analytics software, we were able to integrate QuickSight dashboards directly into our own platform. For example, we offer our customers a portal where they can register a new analytical dashboard through our user interface. That interface connects to the QuickSight application programming interface (API) to enable embedding in a highly configurable and secure way.

With this functionality, our customers can ingest and visualize complex healthcare data, such as clinical data from electronic medical record (EMR) systems, eligibility and claims, CRM and digital interactions data. Our Insights data model is projected into Quicksight’s high performance in memory calculation engine enabling high performance analysis on massive datasets.

Creating a developer experience for customers

We have also embedded the QuickSight console into our platform. Through this approach, our healthcare data customers can build their own datasets and quickly share that data with a wider group of users through our platform. This gives our customers a developer experience that enables them to customize and share analytical reports with their colleagues. With only a few clicks, users can aggregate and compare data from their sales and EMR solutions.

QuickSight has also improved collaboration for our own teams when it comes to custom reports. In the past, teams could only do monthly or specialized reports, spending a lot of time building them, downloading them as PDFs, and sending them out to clients as slides. It was a time-consuming and inefficient way to share data. Now, our users can get easy access to data from previously siloed sources, and then simply publish reports and share access to that data immediately.

Helping healthcare providers uncover new insights

Because healthcare providers now have centralized data at their fingertips, they can make faster and more strategic decisions. For instance, management teams can look at dashboards on our platform to see updated demand data to plan more accurate staffing models. We’ve also created patient and provider data models that provide a 360-degree view of patient and payer data, increasing visibility. Additionally, care coordinators can reprioritize tasks and take action if necessary because they can view gaps in care through the dashboards. Armed with this data, care coordinators can work to improve the patient experience at the point of care.

patient and provider data models that provide a 360-degree view of patient and payer data

Building and publishing reports twice as fast

QuickSight is a faster BI solution than anything we’ve used before. We can now craft a new dataset, apply permissions to it, build out an analysis, and publish and share it in a report twice as fast as we could before. The solution also gives our developers a better overall experience. For rapid development and deployment at scale, QuickSight performs extremely well at a very competitive price.

Because QuickSight is a serverless solution, we no longer need to worry about our BI overhead. With our previous solution, we had a lot of infrastructure, maintenance, and licensing costs. We have eliminated those challenges by implementing QuickSight. This is a key benefit because we’re an early stage company and our lean product development team can now focus on innovation instead of spinning up servers.

As our platform has become more sophisticated over the past few years, QuickSight has introduced vast number of great features for data catalog management, security, ML integrations, and look/feel that has really improved on our original solution’s BI capabilities. We look forward to continuing to use this powerful tool to help our customers get more out of their data.

About the Authors

David Atkins is the Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer at Lucerna Health

Adriana Murillo is the Co-Founder & Chief Marketing Officer at Lucerna Health