Archimedes is a healthcare modeling company, just like the financial industries model for their financial solutions.  Modeling when enough accurate information is used can be helpful for sure.  One thing we are looking at today though is the accuracy and you have probably read several articles out there of late about folks being disappointed in their “big data” not giving the results they had hoped for.   We are back to the use of algorithms creating models before solutions are turned loose in the real world.  Again if the model works and accuracy is there, sure you get some good indications of what’s in store for the future. 

Archimedes models clinical trials as an example to get some imagevaluable information ahead of time to project on how some of the results will formulate.  Again keep in mind this is a “model” and there are error factors as models tell us a lot but they do in fact have to unite with the “real world” at some point in time.  No matter how great the efforts are with models when projects are applied in the “real” world there’s always surprises and item that come up that were not projected in the model and there’s where the two worlds come together. 

Modeling in healthcare is a little different than financial modeling, but it does include financial projections and costs of projects, etc. and there’s where the meeting of real and models get tested.  In the banking world we are seeing where folks used model just flat out to make money and nobody is asking to see the models and codes and that’s why banks and financial firms ended with so much of the money, “they modeled it that way and worked it”…it’s computer code.  If you want to see how modeling works and sometimes gets skewed in the banking and stock world, scroll on down to the footer and watch video #2, the Quants of Wall Street, and overall it will help you understand overall what a “model” is.  It’s touchy subject as folks can solve great issues with models but we also have to be aware of how they can be tweaked at the same time for financial gain. 

Also of interest is video #1 in the footer where Professor Siefe talks about the dark side of modeling and how quantitated justification is used for gain and we end up sometimes with nonsense numbers so important to look at both sides and know they exist as this is impacted as to what you read in the media today.  As he states, “Context is Everything” and I might add to that context is sometimes hard to define as well and if we don’t ask and go there, then we can get duped. 

Quantitated Justification For Believing Things That Are Not True And Using Mathematical Processes To Fool Ourselves-The Journalistic Bot Functionality Debuts As Media Can’t Resist the Formulas…

The fact that Kaiser is selling this subsidiary is interesting in itself as the company is being placed with other “like” entities with the pursuit of money, so keep that in mind as that’s a lot what models do today.  In the Archimedes model “virtual people” are created to pursue predictive outcomes as well as predictive type solutions.  Evidera is one of the portfolio companies of the Symphony Technology group.  One companyimage in the portfolio is Symphony Health Solutions which basically didn’t lead me to a lot of information other than it’s consulting.  Going back over to Evidera, we have this statement….big focus on data needed by payers…as if you pay attention you will notice a large jump in the number of Quants (aka data scientists) insurers themselves are hiring. 

“Our experts are able to identify data needed by payers, HTA agencies and regulators; develop plans to generate the required body of evidence; and synthesize the data and evidence into streamlined, impactful communications for each decision maker. VDP may be applied to biopharmaceutical, medical device, or diagnostic products at any point in the product development life cycle.”

A model, is a model is a model you could say and of course breakthroughs in medical research are attained by working models too.  Sometimes if the model is not working then adjustments and changes have to be made as well, again the real world has big impact here as well so again interesting that Kaiser is selling the subsidiary for what ever reason they have, but this is a consolidation of Quants creating math formulas for sure.  We do have to keep an open eye with the models insurers use as well as common sense tells you that with being public companies traded on stock exchanges and that their number one priority is share holders and we have seen this abused in the financial world so accountability with models is important so we don’t even up with fantasy models that don’t work in the real world. 

Mike Osinksi, who wrote the software that banks and financial firms used for the sub prime financial fantasy world that lost billions for us sums it up pretty well with one statement “with software, you can’t do something about everything”..and that is true…and then he states “it’s the real world out thereimage and some models end being pure fantasy for profit too”.  News agencies have a hard time with some of this too with discussing models and what they mean and where they have impact and they get spoofed too on some of news that floats out there with statistics. 

Again when models work and have a good design without the “fantasy factor added in for financial gain” we get a lot of insight and information we can use.  Symphony Technologies is all about about software and you hear that on their home page.  Their video states they promote outsourcing and helping the companies get to the next levels among other areas, so keep one thing in mind, code rules and runs on servers 24/7 and make life impacting decisions about all of us and folks with the code and models as they design, use it to move money in their direction.   

“Symphony Technology Group invests in and partners with enterprise software and services companies with the potential to become world class global businesses. STG's operational expertise, track-record of technology innovation and proven approach to increasing customer value help Group companies transform domain expertise into global growth and market dominance.”

So again it is interesting that Kaiser is selling a subsidiary of quants basically and now the technologies and models are moving over to where they can make money I assume versus being owned by a non profit.  One more essay on this topic worth reading written by Quant Cathy O’Neil is about being a skeptic, she has a great blog with a lot of insight and is a mathematician that has been modeling for years to even include Hedge Funds, and she shares both the up and downsides of models and suggests to “sniff the data” so we don’t get duped.   She’s right, modelers have a bigger responsibility than ever before or we end up over the Algo Duping page with believing information that is not true. 

These are the “black boxes” of math and code of  Healthcare just as the financial world uses for money and trading calculations. 

“On Being a Data skeptic- Modelers Have A Bigger Responsibility Now Than Ever Before”–A Must Read Essay, Start “Sniffing the Data”…

Actually if you want to hear about how Archimedes does some of their big data, this video below is about a year old and the chief software engineer is on this panel discussing big data…so you get an idea of how Quants in healthcare think in design and also relate to other industries with their thoughts…Quants are visibly discussed here and not hidden as most news stories do as they don’t  understand them…a good thing as you hear some modeling talk along with big data and there’s some pretty heavy hitters in this video to include NASA and Ford. 

I originally used this video in a post about big data analytics being a threat to consumers if true values were not communicated and the potential of greed and making money distorting some of this.  BD 

Big Data/Analytics If Used Out of Context and Without True Values Stand To Be A Huge Discriminatory Practice Against Consumers–More Honest Data Scientists Needed to Formulate Accuracy/Value To Keep Algo Duping For Profit Out of the Game

Kaiser Permanente is selling its Archimedes subsidiary, a healthcare modeling firm, to Evidera and its parent private equity backer, Symphony Technology Group. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"We are committed to continuing the mission of the original intent imageof Archimedes and its model of quantitative healthcare," Dr. Jed Weissberg, senior vice president, hospitals, quality and care delivery excellence at Kaiser Permanente, said in a news release announcing the deal. "The buyer, Symphony/Evidera, is a great home to enable the scientists to further their pursuits to enable personalized care for the future of medicine."

Evidera is headquartered in Bethesda, Md., but also has an office in Seattle, so Archimedes will be its second West Coast outpost.


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