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Big Data and the Electronic Health Record

Peters, Steve G. MD; Buntrock, James D. MS

Journal of Ambulatory Care Management: July/September 2014 - Volume 37 - Issue 3 - p 206–210
doi: 10.1097/JAC.0000000000000037
Original Articles

The electronic medical record has evolved from a digital representation of individual patient results and documents to information of large scale and complexity. Big Data refers to new technologies providing management and processing capabilities, targeting massive and disparate data sets. For an individual patient, techniques such as Natural Language Processing allow the integration and analysis of textual reports with structured results. For groups of patients, Big Data offers the promise of large-scale analysis of outcomes, patterns, temporal trends, and correlations. The evolution of Big Data analytics moves us from description and reporting to forecasting, predictive modeling, and decision optimization.

Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care (Dr Peters) and Information Management and Analytics, Department of Information Technology (Dr Buntrock), Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.

Correspondence: Steve G. Peters, MD, Mayo Clinic, 200 First St SW, Rochester, MN 55905 (

The authors have declared no financial conflict of interest.

© 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins