Data science is transforming healthcare; DASH envisions the harmonization of BC's data platforms and policies to empower our members, and deliver on the promise of data science to advance healthcare delivery.
Medicine is by its nature data-intense, generating monstrous amounts of information from diagnostic testing and clinical encounters, but these data are frequently siloed and inaccessible to the health research community. Accessing health data in BC is complex and time-consuming, and the limitations of current processes have been brought to the fore by the COVID-19 pandemic where rapid access to data to discover mechanisms of transmission, risk factors, prognostic indicators and efficacy of treatment strategies was critical. Our collective efforts to harness pandemic data for research exposed a fragmented health care and data landscape, with bureaucratic layers operating independently in different health authorities and academic institutions, compounded by privacy and governance concerns.
We envision the development of a harmonized data ecosystem in BC that can accommodate multimodal and multidimensional data. We will analyze the inefficiencies of current data platforms, and create tools and linkage systems that can allow multidirectional data flow and communication. We aim to optimize access to data platforms while preserving privacy through unique coding and state-of-the-art privacy-preserving artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. We will enable the use of Big Data for health research to rapidly address emerging clinical challenges and align with provincial efforts to build a learning health system for BC.