Healthcare Leaders Drowning in Data Receive Lifeline from Health Catalyst with Leading Wisely®, Next-Generation Executive Decision Support System

The next step in the evolution of executive decision support automates insight discovery, simplifying decisions in a culture rife with information overload

SALT LAKE CITY, March 28, 2017—Healthcare leaders are tasked with managing the most complex and changeable industry on Earth, one in which access to the right information at the right time is mission critical. Yet many are almost literally drowning in information as they struggle to collect and interpret data from dozens of IT systems and hundreds of reports in competing formats.

It’s a problem that threatens the productivity of healthcare executives and the efficiency of the enterprises they lead—if not the very health of the nation.

To help, Health Catalyst, a leader in data analytics, decision support and outcomes improvement, today announced the release of Leading Wisely®, a breakthrough technology marking the long-awaited next step in the evolution of executive decision support. The web-based solution automatically transforms data, key measures and goals from multiple business units into the fundamental insights critical to leadership. Leading Wisely combines and analyzes near real-time data from every available IT system and software program, and then enables users to customize information, share it with others, and set their own alerts and notifications.  As a result, managers are empowered to take control of the data deluge to more effectively plan, prioritize improvement projects, create alignment among groups, strategize best solutions, and communicate decisions.

“Collecting and synthesizing the data required for quarterly and annual planning can be an extremely time-consuming and frustrating process that often leaves executive teams struggling to make critical strategic decisions based on incomplete information,” said Timothy Sielaff, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer of Allina Health, Minnesota’s largest health system with 13 hospitals and 27,000 employees. “Leading Wisely is a game changer that promises to completely transform the decision-making process by giving each member of the executive team immediate access to the insights that are critical to their success and that of their team’s.”

Old approaches to decision support miss the mark

In most healthcare organizations, the process of collecting data to support decisions is both time-intensive and frustrating. Organizations are forced to use creative workarounds that assimilate and align data from multiple sources, with results that often reflect a months’-long time lag. These approaches are resource-intensive and often miss the mark, leading to inconsistent date ranges, cohort selections and measure calculations.  In the absence of trusted, current and actionable information, executives find it difficult to plan, delegate, engage their teams in solving issues, and to track progress by work groups.

Unlike existing decision support solutions, Leading Wisely leverages Health Catalyst’s proven ability to integrate over 100 sources of data in its data warehouse, enabling unprecedented access to and consistency of measures across business units. Moreover, its highly configurable framework gives users the equally unprecedented ability to slice and dice data to suit their roles and goals.

With Leading Wisely, users can:

  • Choose, configure and display the balanced measures that best suit their objectives
  • Set alert thresholds, and configure push notifications across teams for when data changes, without help from the IT department
  • Set system targets and goals and track time to meet them with a single-source view of progress and outcomes
  • Enable project integration and collaboration through built-in social communication and sharing features
  • Drill down to department-level data to uncover the sources of variation

“Why settle for a good-enough decision when truly automated and personalized decision support is now available to uncover the right decision at the right time?” asked Dale Sanders, executive vice president of product development for Health Catalyst. “Unlike traditional dashboards or static reports, Leading Wisely helps executives and their teams avoid being blindsided by unexpected information and gives them control over their data with self-service alerts and notifications that they can customize for any purpose. Now they can filter through the thousands of measures available to easily find, track, follow-up on, and share those measures that are most meaningful to their roles or their teams, and that will have the greatest impact on performance.”

Common headaches relieved

The exceptional decision support capabilities of Leading Wisely have the power to solve extremely common problems for healthcare leaders across the C-Suite and at the department level, such as when:

  • An alert set by the CEO calls his attention to a worrisome, real-time downward trend in days of cash on-hand. The CEO quickly reaches out to the CFO and operating unit leaders to address the trend to prevent a bond downgrade by bond rating agencies who are visiting in three months. This prevents adding millions to the cost of acquiring new capital.
  • The CFO is notified of a problematic rise in accounts receivable (or an increase in costs, or declining revenue). Using Leading Wisely, she is able to quickly uncover the root cause and reverse the trend.
  • The COO notices an upward trend in surgery revenue at one of the system’s five regional medical centers. Drilling into the data, she learns this is due to a significant improvement in Operating Room turnover time following an improvement project resulting in greater productivity and increased revenue. She connects the surgery director with surgery directors at the other four centers and quickly spreads the best practice across the system.
  • The CIO is alerted when labor costs and timelines on a large, expensive IT project that had been spiraling out of control finally hit their targets. Leading Wisely lets him quickly see the improvement and determine what made the difference. He is able to quickly share the knowledge with all of the IT Directors so it can benefit other IT projects.
  • An alert set by the Chief Medical Officer goes off when blood utilization at one of the system’s hospitals increases suddenly. Drilling into the data reveals the cause is a newly trained surgeon who is unfamiliar with the standard blood utilization protocols. The CMO contacts the surgeon and reviews the best practice protocols. Subsequently, the surgeon quickly aligns with best practice.
  • The HR Leader is notified when staff turnover increases sharply at one of the system’s hospitals. The timely heads’ up triggers a proactive effort to uncover the cause and minimize additional turnover thereby avoiding the expense of recruiting and training additional new personnel.

Leading Wisely resolves these and other problems for healthcare leaders via integration of common industry measures such as AR days, length of stay, patient satisfaction, mortality rate, readmissions, census, and boarder measures. Once deployed, customers can add and integrate additional standard and custom measures.

“Leading Wisely is the Bloomberg terminal of healthcare, giving organizations much greater visibility into key measures and goals, and helping to coordinate work via a single source of truth,” said Dorian DiNardo, PMP, vice president and product line manager for operations and performance management at Health Catalyst. “Leading Wisely prevents the communication breakdown that often happens from the time a decision is made in the board room through to tracking improvement, reaching targets, and monitoring progress.”

Online Demo Available

A video demonstration of Leading Wisely can be viewed here:

A downloadable data sheet detailing the solution’s benefits and features is available here:

About Health Catalyst

Health Catalyst is a next-generation data, analytics, and decision-support company, committed to being a catalyst for massive, sustained improvements in healthcare outcomes. We are the leaders in a new era of advanced predictive analytics for population health and value-based care with a suite of machine learning-driven solutions, decades of outcomes-improvement expertise, and an unparalleled ability to integrate data from across the healthcare ecosystem. Our proven data warehousing and analytics platform helps improve quality, add efficiency and lower costs in support of more than 85 million patients for organizations ranging from the largest US health system to forward-thinking physician practices. Our technology and professional services can help you keep patients engaged and healthy in their homes and workplaces, and we can help you optimize care delivery to those patients when it becomes necessary. We are grateful to be recognized by Fortune, Gallup, Glassdoor, Modern Healthcare and a host of others as a Best Place to Work in technology and healthcare. Visit, and follow us on TwitterLinkedIn and Facebook.

Media Contact:
Todd Stein
Amendola Communications