The potential of real-world healthcare data
In the quest to improve patient outcomes, the healthcare industry has recognized the immense opportunity for the use of real-world data (RWD) to enrich research and drive improved patient outcomes. RWD is information routinely collected on a patient’s health from a variety of sources —doctor’s visits, registries, patient advocacy groups, and wearable devices such as a heart rate monitor on a smartwatch.
However, several challenges have hindered the widespread utilization of this data. As a result, the healthcare industry contributes over 30% of total generated data worldwide but retains only 2% of this data year-over-year.
Addressing these challenges is essential to incorporate valuable insights that will revolutionize health outcomes and create a more tailored patient journey.
The barriers to utilizing healthcare data
Bringing together a holistic view of a patient’s experience over time, often called the longitudinal patient journey, requires input from many aspects of the healthcare system — including diagnostic, pharmacy, genetic testing, and hospital information.
Health information exists in many formats and places, resulting in a varying standard of accessibility. Advances in the digitization of health records and standardization of digital data have helped improve the availability of health data for research purposes.
However, bringing that data together into an integrated data asset to represent complete information on the patient journey – and identify unmet needs – requires information to be shared between stakeholders in the healthcare system. A significant challenge in this exchange is protecting patient privacy and safeguarding data throughout this process.
Unlocking data insights with Datavant and Decentriq: A GDPR-compliant solution
Datavant, the leader in helping organizations securely connect health data, has joined forces with Decentriq, a Swiss enterprise SaaS platform whose Microsoft Azure confidential computing-based data clean rooms are used by the most regulated organizations in the world for data analysis and collaboration. This partnership will enable improved health data exchange by combining Datavant’s technology to securely link datasets with Decentriq’s clean rooms to create secure, privacy-compliant spaces for collaborative analysis that ensures patient information remains protected.
Decentriq enables users to collaborate on their most sensitive data while remaining compliant with regulations such as GDPR. Its platform combines the end-to-end encryption of confidential computing with the guarantees of synthetic data and differential privacy to enforce data privacy while facilitating valuable insights from combined data.
Researchers, data scientists, and analysts will use Datavant’s technology natively within Decentriq’s platform to convert raw, identifiable data into encrypted, privacy-protecting “tokens” that let users connect datasets at the patient record level. This data can then be used to perform standard analytics also native to the Decentriq platform, such as SQL, Python, or R, to generate insights without ever revealing the raw data to anyone — including Decentriq and Datavant.
The result of the partnership is a transformative solution that addresses the long-standing challenge of collaborating on European RWD and opens new avenues for data-driven healthcare advancements. Ultimately, this infrastructure will power innovative research that advances patient health outcomes and creates new efficiencies in the healthcare system.
Improving patient outcomes with wider data access
The primary catalyst behind the partnership is to ease data collaboration for hospitals. As the ultimate stewards of their patients’ information, hospitals maintain meticulous data security protocols designed to prevent data leaks or improper handling of private information.
Datavant and Decentriq aim to unlock expanded data access and build trust among participating hospitals through the rigorous security and strict privacy measures established within the context of the partnership.
Broader access to this type of data will make many new applications of RWD possible, such as:
- Long-term follow up of patients after clinical trials, monitoring adverse effects and real-world treatment applications from places where it was previously impossible to obtain data
- Identifying patients of rare diseases and forming cohorts for new therapies
- Supplementing clinical trial data with real-world medical data from European patients
- Including underrepresented population data in drug development pipelines, potentially accelerating the time for approval by regulators
These notable uses of RWD have proven productive both in Europe and globally. As infrastructure expands to support digital data exchange, uses of data to solve problems will expand correspondingly.
A blueprint for privacy-preserving analysis of health data
The partnership between Datavant and Decentriq ensures the utmost focus on security and patient privacy. Built on the most advanced data privacy and encryption technologies available, it paves the way for secure analysis of health data without the need to relocate it from the point of care.
Improving digitalization rates and data quality across European health networks helps to bring the reservoir of RWD closer to realizing its full potential. Building infrastructure allowing this data to be safely leveraged – both to assemble complete datasets and ensure the correct data is available to key healthcare decision-makers – will make healthcare more efficient, effective, and privacy-centric.