In March 2020, as the novel coronavirus began to spread across the country, the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and UCHealth, a system of 12 hospitals and hundreds of clinics, suddenly needed to prepare for an expected surge of patients with advanced respiratory illness. How many ventilators would they need, and when? Needing urgent answers, the pandemic planning team approached the Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine (CCPM), a joint project with UCHealth, for help.
Dr. Michael Kahn, Emeritus Professor of Informatics and Data Science in the Department of Pediatrics, had spearheaded the Health Data Compass warehouse at CCPM for scenarios like this one, where clinicians require comprehensive, reliable data analysis with a fast turnaround. Since 2015, Compass has integrated anonymized clinical information from the electronic medical records at UCHealth and Children's Hospital Colorado, provider billing data from CU Medicine, and -omics data from CCPM. It collects and standardizes health information from six million patient records across the state—from genomics to annual physicals.
When the UCHealth system reached out to CCPM they were ready with the data and resources for prompt results. Initial data sets were extracted within 36 hours of the initial request; a working model was available within the first week that aided clinicians in identifying patients’ therapeutic needs in the coming days and weeks. “It was spectacularly quick from initial conception to useful first-version models,” Dr. Kahn reports.
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