The Care Quality Commission is introducing intelligent data mining software to monitor the performance of health and social care providers.
QinetiQ is providing a system that will automatically extract, categorise and analyse sentiment from the vast quantities of comments about the performance of health providers that the commission receives from the public and its own assessors and inspectors nationwide.
The system will initially collate opinions on care homes, hospitals and dentists, while GPs will be covered from April next year. The 18-month contract for the system follows a successful pilot undertaken last year.
The system is powered by two software engines and tailored to process views expressed about a provider, categorised into the CQC’s essential standards of quality and safety.
Previously, a small team of people at the CQC had the job of handling a certain amount of qualitative information.
A company statement says the new system will “allow the CQC to systematically and quickly assess vast quantities of documents and information, by feeding the knowledge and domain expertise of their staff into the system to help it learn to analyse information in the way their experts currently do.”
“It offers a scalable solution with growth potential for the future, exploiting new data sources as they become available, for example, from HealthWatch England.”
QinetiQ’s project director, Dr Andrew Rankin said the company has been working closely with the CQC for several years and developed an understanding of the issues it faces.
“This has enabled us to apply our technical expertise (and that of our partners) to provide a solution that is unique to them,” he said.
© 2012 EHealth Media.
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