January 16, 2023

Using Placekey® for Distance Calculation and Business Intelligence

Besides using the CoLoCode or SelectGeo location data from CarePrecise, another way to append location data to your dataset (and make it compatible with others, such as the healthcare provider data packages available through CarePrecise SafeGraph) involves Placekey, and it's free!

Unlike geocode appending of latitude and longitude, which can be pricey for very large datasets, Placekey is free to use for creating the keys from any U.S. or Canadian addresses. You simply upload your addresses via the API, and the keys are returned. Once you've keyed your in-house data's addresses and business names, you can then connect with data from a growing number of vendors, such as First American Data & Analytics, Experian, Snowflake, and Landgrid.

Imagine being able to connect your data via the physical address of your customers to access deeper information on them—information that could be valuable business intelligence. These keys facilitate those connections, simplifying analysis. By integrating Placekey's technology into existing systems, companies now link disparate datasets from multiple vendors quickly and accurately. They gain a better understanding of customer behavior without having to resort to manual processes or expensive integration solutions.

Case Example

Suppose you're in charge of siting a new medical practice. When deciding where to locate a new doctor's office, visitor traffic analysis can be used to understand which areas have the most potential for attracting customers—the places where concentrations of patients visiting other practice locations are traveling from. Additional intelligence is gleaned from looking at places where those prospective patients shop and dine, as these routes from home to shopping, etc., are traveled frequently, and siting a practice on the route places the consumer proximate to the new office. 

This can now all be achieved by mapping the locations of other doctor offices based on a basic CarePrecise dataset, and then overlaying visitor traffic patterns and volumes, and other consumer behaviors. Organizations can more confidently choose a possible location. Extended applications come to mind immediately, such as gathering patient visit volumes of competitors. And you can gather these volumes for your own trading partners, and discover the connections between, say, your affiliated hospitals and your competitors' locations to better understand your value in the trade relationship. Being able to see these pictures is like x-ray vision into opportunity.

How It Works

Placekey's unique approach is made possible by its standardized Placekeys, which are uniquely generated for each point-of-interest (POI) based on the physical address. Placekeys can be used to identify and link POIs across multiple datasets from vendors, making it easier to join data from different sources and improve decision making. Placekey's integration with CarePrecise enables users to confidently connect to third party data, allowing them to make informed decisions quickly. 

Use Placekey and Safegraph® to Calculate Distance

Placekey offers a tutorial on its site that describes how the keys can be used to calculate the distance between two POIs based on datasets from Safegraph. The tutorial walks through the steps using the free open source R programming language. R is probably the most commonly used programming languages used in data mining. Safegraph is a curator of datasets.

This technology promises to revolutionize the way healthcare organizations utilize their data own data, and access the additional data they need for vital business intelligence. Where this technology will lead is as yet unfathomable.

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