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The biggest, best, and most inquisitive

The mission? To research, teach, and heal. Charité Berlin, the biggest university hospital in Europe, provides 150,000 inpatient and 600,000 outpatient treatments per year. The hospital’s 3,800 doctors and scientists are committed to the highest levels of healthcare and research – and the organization is equally committed to providing the accurate, timely reports and analysis required for success.


Charité already has a mature analytics program. This enables them to think creatively about how they use patient data, medical records, and study results within their business. Researchers wanted to look at millions of data points and ask questions in a flexible reporting environment – and they wanted to make their in-house analytics systems as fast and easy to use as a Google search. To make this possible, the hospital invested in SAP in-memory technology designed to harness the big data associated with medial records. Already, more than 600 users are taking advantage of the technology.


Getting creative within budget constraints

When the SAP HANA platform was first introduced at Charité, the hospital held workshops to brainstorm use cases, focusing on several key questions: What is possible, and where might the university make improvements? Where could the technology have the biggest impact on patient care and healthcare research? Can we use it to look for trends in patient cases?


For its first project with SAP HANA, the team decided to focus on the hospital’s cancer database and its use in selecting patients for clinical trials. A typical clinical trial involves a research partnership with a commercial sponsor such as a medical device or pharmaceutical company; the hospital has only a small window of opportunity in which to get the study, participants, and funding in place. The faster Charité can identify suitable study participants, the greater its chances of landing the study and conducting the research.


Rapid identification of clinical trial candidates

Charité now uses the SAP HANA Oncolyzer to analyze data merged from its cancer and medical admin databases to find the best candidates for each new trial. The Oncolyzer searches and examines information such as tumor types, gender, age, risk factors, treatments, and diagnoses – to find the best candidates based on the study criteria. In the future, when DNA is added to the data set, the Oncolyzer will analyze up to 500,000 data points per patient. Both structured and unstructured data is analyzed, accelerating the identification process greatly – and giving Charité a competitive advantage over other prospective research partners.


Creatively applying HANA to solve intriguing business problems

In an industry other than healthcare? SAP HANA is equally applicable to thousands of other business situations. For example, an oil company seeking to evaluate the potential of each well in its inventory can quickly analyze data that includes geography, flow history, current output, producer, supporting firms, and more, then match individual wells against particular objectives. Need to identify a well with certain characteristics or generate insights into deployed assets and maintenance cycles? No problem. Or suppose your company manages a large and thriving port. Need to optimize harbor management? An in-memory solution can analyze incoming ship data, meter information, average terminal time, and more. The applications are endless. Whatever the industry, whatever the type of information, SAP HANA can pull together structured and unstructured data and rapidly generate additional value out of every asset.

How do I get started?

What can SAP HANA do for you? Start by gathering your organization’s best minds to think about common industry problems. Think of assets in new ways, and ask new questions. What would you want to know if you could? SAP HANA combined with creative minds can take your company where it hasn’t gone before.

Need more inspiration? For ideas on how different industries have used SAP HANA and related technologies, check out the Experience SAP HANA site. Get inspired by insights from experienced practitioners – or get involved and share your experience.

Learn more

Business Analytics Services from SAP can help you explore the value of SAP HANA for your organization or industry. Now bring SAP HANA’s revolutionary in-memory technology together with your most thoughtful and innovative minds – and watch the insights, performance, and productivity thrive.

For more information on SAP HANA, please visit us online or watch a video on Charite.


About the author

What makes Ralph Richter run: Discovering new places.

What Makes me Run.jpg


Coming from the healthcare industry, I joined SAP in 2002 and currently head the SAP EMEA Business Intelligence Competency Center. I have been working with Charité since 2009 on in-memory technology, but am intimately familiar with hospital settings from my previous work as a controller in a university hospital. As a registered nurse (RN) with a diploma in hospital management, I am able to support this great work at Charité from a uniquely blended healthcare and technical perspective. Today I am doing strategy consulting in the BI area for oil and gas companies, hospitals, and many others – helping customers “discover new places” with in-memory computing. As a nurse, I learned to treat and take care of patients. At SAP, I’ve learned how to solve our customers’ business problems, bring value to their operations, and make them happy. This is what makes me run.



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