Decision support for small community hospitals

Decision support for small community hospitals

Small community hospitals face different challenges than their larger counterparts, often lacking the financial resources to hire the technical expertise needed to make full use of their data. Nevertheless, they still have the same reporting and analytical needs as any other healthcare organization.

While provincial and federal agencies do provide limited support based on standardized submission files sent to CIHI, Ontario Health, and other organizations, the same concern is often expressed:

“The reports sent back to the hospital are not timely enough to act upon,
and we don’t have the means to create the reports necessary to meet our hospital’s specific needs.”


Standardized submission data is a great tool for retrospective analysis; however, its very nature precludes it from being useful for real-time decision making.

To create timely and actionable insights, more sophisticated tools are needed; however, these tools are normally beyond the reach of smaller community hospitals, which have significant budgetary and resource constraints.

Decision support within the DQA platform

Our DQA platform has been adapted to meet the needs of community hospitals. Through partnerships with over 60 hospitals across Canada, we have developed a suite of decision support tools that provide professional reporting and data analytics that are accessible to hospitals of any size.

We integrate standard hospital data sources, refresh the data on-site nightly, and provide tools to support the following uses:

  • Dashboards built alongside leading hospitals: After data is collected in a hospital, the next most challenging task is creating data analytics that can actually improve hospital operations. Through partnerships with dozens of Canadian hospitals, we provide refined, ready-to-use dashboards that your team can immediately use. We help analyze emergency department activity, corporate performance, and variations in care between patient groups, among other things.
  • Self-serve reporting: DQA provides an intuitive, web-based reporting tool for analyzing visits based on hundreds of indicators and patient cohorts, as well as the ability to drill down and analyze individual encounters. Users can explore the data on their own and generate, publish, and distribute new reports within the hospital.
  • Custom cohorts and indicators: Responding to the need for new indicators and patient groups for analysis can be resource intensive and difficult. In addition to the library of standard indicators and cohorts (e.g. return visits, readmissions, ED P4R metrics) included in the base platform, we allow your Decision Support team to quickly create and use new patient visit logic to meet ever-evolving hospital requirements.
  • Data quality checks that affect key performance metrics: Our DQA Audit Engine automatically detects errors that impact key metrics such as HSMR rate, conservable days, and ED performance measures.
  • Data quality checks that affect hospital funding: Poor data quality affects calculated inpatient and outpatient complexity (i.e. CMI). Although HSFR funding policies do not cover smaller hospitals, Ministries of Health still use weighted case analysis as the main mechanism for calculating the volume and complexity of medical services provided at each hospital when determining equitable funding allocations

We also provide support to help your team if they need assistance creating new indicators, patient groups, reports, and dashboards. Our team has worked on many hospital analytics projects over the past 15 years and we’d be happy to assist with any of your data initiatives.


Our aim is to provide small community hospitals with the high-quality tooling that is usually only available to larger hospitals, while addressing their unique budgetary and resource constraints.

We offer a demo where you can try out our platform using your own data. Email us or schedule a 30-minute call to learn more about how our analytics platform can help you get the most out of your data.