Last week we wrote about smart ways for hospitals to better market their services by mining information that’s right at their fingertips. Now we’ve run across a study published in Archives of Surgery (December 2011) that makes us realize healthcare systems can use those same patient analytics to improve staff services.

The study found that hospitals saw a drop in surgery-related complications after medical team training for surgical staff members. Bringing medical teams together to introduce themselves and participate in team training can help people become more comfortable with each other. And that can lead to their feeling more comfortable speaking up when they see something that might cause an error or contribute to an adverse event.

So what does analytics have to do with it? As the study proved, knowledge builds confidence. The more your staff knows about the potential patients arriving at your healthcare facility, the better prepared they can be to care for them. Use granular, household-level analytics for your market area to understand everything from cultural behavior to dietary preferences.

That information is most likely being collected right now by your marketing department. All you need to do is analyze it and apply predictive modeling to gain deep insights into your patient population.

With federal healthcare mandates likely to force hospitals to meet quality standards to maintain reimbursement rates, improving staff performance is soon going to be even more critical than ever. And patient analytics is one of the best tools you can use to get there.