The Ministry of Health, New Zealand, is the Government’s principal advisor on health and disability: improving, promoting and protecting the health of all New Zealanders. The data and information architecture supporting the National Screening Unit depended on agility and insight to provide quality decision making. With an Information Quality structure consisting of Program Manager, Project Manager, Business Analysts and Statisticians, BICG provided rapid solutions to blend screening data with population data to deliver better decision making for future health outcomes. In an interview, Peter O’Gorman discusses with Rajen Jani the importance of modern information architecture to make it easy to blend external data like population statistics with real organisation data.

Situation:
The New Zealand Ministry of Health  depend on agility and insights to provide quality decision making around data.

Solution:
The solution identified the key risks of legacy Reporting Services 2005 platform, highlighted depreciated functionality and provided an architecture and roadmap for platform consolidation and migration.

Interview:
RJ: What was the data challenge New Zealand Ministry of Health project were seeking from a modern data solution?
PO’G: Information architectures are highly transformed and aggregated these days, masking what the data looked like in raw form.   Raw data doesn’t change but the way we look at data changes.   A highly modelled and simplified view of data is terrific for a specific business case for a specified time, but for an entire geographically dispersed and complex organisation, over a number of years, the demands on data changes, the effort in managing changing data increases, agility slows to a crawl and the whole thing becomes unsustainable.
RJ: What was the structure of the project?
PO’G: The Information Quality structure for the project consisted of Program Manager, Project Manager, Business Analysts and Statisticians.
RJ: What were the project objectives?
PO’G: Consolidation and Modernisation of the Information Architecture supporting data insights for the National Screening Unit as a whole.  In addition, to address urgent regulatory reporting requirements and leverage BICG’s architecture experience to provide options for SQL Server Reporting Services 2005-2014 migration.
RJ: How were the objectives achieved?
PO’G: We identified the key risks in staying on the Reporting Services 2005 platform. We highlighted items of depreciated functionality e.g. Report Models and provided options for Platform Consolidation and Migration to support agility and accountability.  We identified the importance of building a business case around agility and accountability to meet changing business rules around how data is interpreted and presented.
RJ: What were the challenges that you faced in this project?
PO’G: Two different areas of the business looking at the same data but getting different numbers.
RJ: Whom did you interact with?
PO’G: There were front line subject matter experts, specialists in Breast Cancer, doctors, statisticians, and business analysts.
RJ: Do you recollect any pivotal event?
PO’G: Building a business case for a modern information architecture that allows raw data to be stored in a vault, allowing the business to look at the data with different lenses.
RJ: How was your experience in this project?
PO’G: Providing services to international customers is very rewarding.
RJ: Interacting with such accomplished persons and working with such a qualified team, you must have also learned a lot.
PO’G: This was not our first health project but first for the New Zealand government.   The requirement to blend population and demographic data with patient activity data is a common business requirement we have encountered with our other health customers.
RJ: Can you give any links to websites or news reports about this project?
PO’G: www.health.govt.nz/
RJ: Thank you Peter for giving your valuable time. It was a pleasure to interview you.
PO’G: Thank you Rajen.

Benefits:
Due to the experience and focus of BICG, the New Zealand Ministry of Health accelerated their steps to a modern Information architecture. The key risks were identified, items of depreciated functionality were highlighted, and a roadmap for Platform Consolidation and Migration were projected.

For further information:
1. Peter O’Gorman (peter@bicg.com.au)
2. Ministry of Health, New Zealand (www.health.govt.nz/)

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