HBS Selects iDecizion For Healthcare Facilities

September 15, 2000

NEWS BRIEFS

Boulder, COLO. — Visual Numerics, Inc., a developer of web-enabled data visualization, numerical analysis and enterprise software solutions, announced that iDecizion has been selected by Seattle-based HBS International, Inc. (HBSI), as the data visualization engine of its online exchange for hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

iDecizion is Visual Numerics’ web-enabled solution for graphically analyzing complex business intelligence data.

HBSI provides comparative clinical, financial and operational performance information to hospitals and healthcare systems worldwide. Until last year, the company provided this business intelligence information to customers in the form of a CD-ROM, typically with a two-week turn around. With iDecizion, however, HBSI now uses the Internet to provide customers with near real-time, customizable competitive information. The newfound ability to gather and analyze data faster and more efficiently has enhanced the way HBSI’s customers make critical decisions and manage healthcare delivery.

“At first we came to Visual Numerics looking only for a way to allow customers to create and customize a wide variety of charts and graphs,” said Kathleen Marzahl, HBSI’s vice president of development. “Then they showed us iDecizion and we realized we could get the charting capabilities plus web distribution in a single package.”

iDecizion is web-based software that allows the user to quickly access and understand what data means, from anywhere, at anytime. With iDecizion, HBSI customers can rapidly analyze, visualize and share critical information immediately with everyone in the organization, regardless of the computer platform. iDecizion features multiple chart types and visualization techniques for quickly creating 3-D surfaces, X-Y plots, polar plots, animations, contours, bar charts, and histograms. Once generated, these charts are streamed to the browser for instantaneous analysis and examination. iDecizion’s powerful image processing and display routines let the user smooth, sharpen, filter and fine-tune images.

Rapid deployment of the system was an imperative for HBSI. “We needed to deploy the new web-based system very quickly,” Marzahl said. “The fast time-to-market was made possible partly by the expertise of Visual Numerics’ consultants, and partly because iDecizion’s architecture lends itself to rapid development. The ability to read data from varied sources, create a customizable graphic, and distribute that graphic and the associated data securely via the web is all built into iDecizion.”

iDecizion proved to be a powerful solution in other ways. For example, HBSI’s attempt to import data from one online analytical processing (OLAP) tool proved insufficiently adaptable, which led to an attempt to import data into iDecizion from a second OLAP tool. Both of these attempts proved equally limiting. However, iDecizion’s built-in relational database management system (RDBMS) import option allowed HBSI to import data directly from the Oracle database that had served as a source for the OLAP tools. “The OLAP tools were extraneous, and unnecessarily restricted data format and volume,” Marzahl said. “iDecizion already had the solution inside.”

Marzahl summed up the advantages iDecizion offers HBSI’s customers by saying, “a typical customer wants, for example, information on the frequency of occurrence of a medical procedure broken out by age range, gender, and time of year. All he has to do is use any Java enabled browser to access HBSI’s secure server, get the data in a useful graphic, and customize that graphic in real time. This is real progress.” iDecizion supports the following operating systems: Unix (Solaris, HP-UX, IRIX, Tru64 and AIX), Linux and Windows NT.

Privately held Visual Numerics provides data visualization and numerical analysis software tools to major corporations, academic institutions, and research laboratories worldwide. This large and diverse customer base is supported through a direct sales force, wholly-owned international subsidiaries and international distributors. Visual Numerics’ products include JWAVE for enterprise data analysis, PV-WAVE for desktop data analysis, iDecizion for business intelligence data analysis, INVIZION for time-series data analysis, and the IMSL Libraries for mathematical and statistical analysis. For more information, visit the company’s web site at http://www.vni.com .

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