With 30% of the world’s data volume produced from the medical industry, most healthcare organizations are migrating healthcare data from their legacy, on-premises systems to modern, cloud storage solutions.

What is Healthcare Data Migration?

Healthcare data migration involves moving healthcare data from existing applications and systems, including electronic health record (EHR) systems, to a new destination.

An effective data migration execution aids healthcare data management and enables healthcare organizations to improve patient care, reduce costs and make informed business decisions based on data insights.

Medical data can come from a myriad of sources, including but not limited to:

  • Patient records and healthcare data, comprising demographic and clinical information. This is stored in a paper or electronic format across various in-house servers or cloud storage.
  • Community health records consisting of both global and local population
  •  Operational data generated by a healthcare organization or other service providers that offer technical, IT, or legal assistance.healthcare data

Reasons to Migrate Healthcare Data

There are various reasons why organizations seek a data migration solution. Some of those reasons are:

1. Modernizing Data Systems

Data architecture modernization is the most common reason for data migration. With a great need to establish optimized workflows and data management practices, many healthcare organizations decommission legacy systems and move toward advanced IT and data center architecture to manage and store their data efficiently. For this purpose, they must shift healthcare data from legacy systems into modernized ones.

2. Archiving EHR/EMR Records

An EHR contains patient data, including medical history, treatment plans, prescriptions, lab reports, and demographic information. When a healthcare organization chooses to upgrade its EHR/EMR system, a data migration team is set up to ensure that all healthcare data is transferred securely while being accessible.

Data archiving is standard practice in this medical industry data archiving is standard practice to safeguard medical data. It allows them to save costs on maintenance and comply with data retention and HIPAA regulations.

3. Changing the Data Storage Provider

With data coming from different sources, most healthcare institutions seek to upscale their data storage by moving to an advanced storage provider, typically a cloud storage provider.

With Astera, we can help you accelerate your cloud data migration journey by modernizing your on-premise database or warehouse by migrating to popular on-cloud platforms such as Amazon S3, Redshift, Snowflake, and Google Cloud, all while transforming and manipulating data according to your needs in a secure manner.

4. Consolidating Systems after a Merger or Acquisition

During a merger and acquisition, consolidating data of the involved healthcare organizations can be challenging. Data stored in all the systems must be consolidated correctly for a seamless data structure in the newly merged organization. The merged systems are often incompatible, so the data must be cleansed, transformed, validated, and then loaded into centralized storage.

5. Improving Data Interoperability

Interoperable data exchange enables seamless data exchange across different EHR systems, applications, or healthcare settings. With the crucial need for up-to-date, easily accessible data in hospitals, interoperability plays a critical role.
For similar reasons, many healthcare organizations are employing data migration from an on-premise to cloud-based data storage solutions. This helps to achieve system integration, resulting in greater accessibility and interoperability than legacy systems.

Healthcare Organizations Heading to the Cloud

According to Gartner, one of the disruptive innovations in the healthcare data landscape is moving to cloud-based storage platforms. An increasing number of healthcare organizations are moving to cloud-based storage solutions to achieve greater flexibility and scalability.
A good example is Novant Health, a North Carolina-based healthcare provider serving more than 5 million patients annually. The integrated service provider shifted to a cloud platform to support its goal for expansion.

At Astera, we have great expertise in legacy data migration. We recently helped CRC Industries profile and structured massive volumes of data with automated migration flows, saving 40% of the time spent on data transfers to Azure.

Seamless Healthcare Data Migration Journey with Astera

Astera Data Stack is a unified data management platform combining data extraction, integration, quality, and profiling features in a more manageable environment. This helps in facilitates the creation and execution of a successful data migration project.

Healthcare data migration

Stage 1: Assessing and Preparing Data

The first stage of the data migration process involves assessing the data, including paper- and electronic-based healthcare records. It’s essential to develop a thorough understanding of data that needs to be migrated to a newer system or archived in the existing legacy system to ensure data accuracy.
Ideally, we must consider converting paper documents to digital files to ensure better data accessibility and quality. Here, replacing unstructured documents can be challenging as manually hand-keying data into electronic systems can be tedious and time-consuming.

Astera ReportMiner, the data extraction component of Astera Data Stack, allows you to quickly convert large volumes of unstructured healthcare data into structured records. You can leverage reusable extraction templates to seamlessly capture data from documents with a similar structure to applications/EHR systems.

Stage 2: Cleansing Data

A best practice for any data migration project is cleaning the source dataset before moving it to a new system. To ensure optimal data quality, you must fix and remove anomalies, duplicates, and errors within datasets. It would be best to look for corrupted, inaccurate, or incomplete data to guarantee that only cleansed data passes to the new data systems.

Astera Data Stack comes with an array of data cleansing and profiling capabilities. You can automate metadata identification to identify and fix discrepancies. Moreover, you can integrate advanced data quality checks into workflows to ensure data integrity.

Stage 3: Structuring Data

Healthcare data comes from a myriad of sources, which differ in terms of compatibility and format. Undoubtedly. It’s necessary to convert existing data into the format required per the newer system’s requirements. This process is done by applying transformations, for instance, aggregating, normalizing/denormalizing, and routing and sorting data to ensure consistent data moves through the dataflow pipelines.

Astera Centerprise, the ETL data mapping component of Astera Data Stack, has over 40+ transformations that allow transforming healthcare data according to the required format of the destination system.

Stage 4: Validating Data

Before moving onto the final stage of migrating data, i.e., moving data to the new system,  data validity checks must be performed.  This help to verify data accuracy and completeness. This step is crucial for ensuring an error-free and accurate data transfer from existing applications and EHR systems to the new destination.

Astera Data Stack has an advanced data preview feature that enables real-time testing and validation of mappings. Moreover, it maintains a record-level log for each record transferred from a source to a destination. Our data migration experts also help clients perform extensive testing for data validation before deploying data to the new system.

Stage 5: Migrating Data

When the migration process is finally operational, all the existing data will be transferred. To guarantee a smooth transition for your patients and personnel, it’s essential to have a team already trained with the spec knowledge of the new system.

With Astera’s extensive list of pre-configured connector sources and destinations, you can quickly establish connectivity to your enterprise and cloud applications as well as databases to integrate and migrate disparate files in a code-free environment.

Experience Accelerated Cloud Data Migration Journey with Astera

Our expertise and experience in data migration can help make your healthcare data migration journey easier and more secure; whether that’s from a legacy system to an on-cloud platform or from an existing healthcare system to a new EHR system, we will coordinate with your personnel and healthcare vendors to ensure a smooth migration process while maintaining HIPAA compliance with 24/7 support from our support team.

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