July 17, 2017

Case Study: Keeping Patients out of the Hospital

How Kinnser Software used applied analytics to develop a new solution that helps keep homecare patients from returning to the hospital.

When Kinnser was founded in 2003, it was with the goal of creating software to help improve home health care in the United States. Within a decade, the Austin-based software company had not only achieved that goal, but also set another one that was even more ambitious: It wanted to tap into the vast quantities of data that it had collected to keep people out of the hospital.

Over the years, Kinnser had amassed a veritable treasure trove of data. The source of that data was the thousands of home health, private duty, therapy and hospice agencies its software supported around the country. Collectively, those agencies had carried out more than three million individual episodes of care. And while the Kinnser team knew that there was value in their data, they were unsure how to unlock it and best put it to use.

That’s where Georgian came in. Following its investment in July 2014, the Georgian R&D team began a deep applied analytics engagement that would last for the next 18 months. It started with an applied analytics workshop, where the team helped brainstorm a prioritized list of opportunities based on the data available and what insights everyone believed Kinnser’s customers would find most valuable.

The team determined that if Kinnser could use the data it had available to predict an individual patient’s risk of rehospitalization, the company would be providing incredible new value. The agencies that Kinnser works with could use this information to better deploy their resources to prevent those readmissions from ever happening.

Considering that the cost of hospital readmissions in the United States exceeded $26 billion in 2014 alone, the stakes were incredibly high. Even preventing a small number of hospitalizations would result in millions of dollars of savings each year.

Small Changes, Big Differences

Over the course of the months that followed, the Kinnser and Georgian teams worked together to develop a predictive model that would help ensure that nurses were getting out to those patients at highest risk of being re-hospitalized. They determined that if agencies could keep even just a few patients out of the hospital each month, their star ratings on Medicare’s Home Health Compare website would go up, which in turn would lead to faster revenue growth.

By October, the teams were holding product definition meetings. They had decided that they wanted to create a new offering and began building the business case for it. This included analyzing the cost of such an undertaking, including the people and technology requirements. They also completed an organizational and technical readiness study.

Once they had the green light for the new product, the Georgian R&D team took the lead in helping Kinnser define the roles that they needed and then recruiting, screening and hiring a team of data scientists and user interface design experts. By June 2015, less than a year after they had begun their work, the teams began wrangling all of the data that they had collected and building models. They also developed interfaces that would be wired into Kinnser’s core software. Not long after, Kinnser launched RiskPoint, a real-time, data-driven hospitalization management platform for home healthcare. RiskPoint analyzes hundreds of data points from each patient’s records to accurately assess his or her current risk of hospitalization. The results are then displayed on a dashboard that lets users click into details and communicate with the clinical team to take preventive action. “RiskPoint has been a huge success for Kinnser,” says Christopher Hester, the company’s Founder and President. “We were able to go to market with a 30 percent premium by adding this functionality and it has really taken off. Georgian’s assistance was invaluable in helping us see the opportunity and execute on it as efficiently as possible.”

“RiskPoint® has been a huge success for Kinnser. We were able to go to market with a 30 percent premium by adding this functionality and it has really taken off. Georgian’s assistance was invaluable in helping us see the opportunity and execute on it as efficiently as possible.”


Christopher Hester

Founder and President of Kinnser Software

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