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 HLT 362 Discussion: Historical Application of Statistics in Health Care

HLT 362 Discussion Historical Application of Statistics in Health Care

Today, statistics is applied in all sectors to show trends in the markets and to enhance the planning processes for the success of an organization. Statistics involves the analysis of collected data to inform the decision-making processes. Healthcare organizations mostly use statistics to show the trends in the emergence and spread of diseases, plan for the medical operation processes, and control the treatment processes, among other activities meant to increase efficiency in the healthcare system. There is always the need for healthcare systems to enhance care delivery and ensure effective patient outcomes. As a result, healthcare institutions often engage in numerous research processes. Besides, in the modern clinical setups, there is the application of evidence-based practices to enhance, diagnosis, treatments, and overall patient care.

Importance of Statistical Knowledge in Healthcare

The knowledge of statistics is used in the modeling processes to formulate the best treatment approaches that are essential for specific types of patients. Statisticians often rely on clinical data to predict and inform any possible variation in the treatment and patient management (Jahan et al., 2016). For instance, whenever there is a disease outbreak, as in the coronavirus case, clinical data collected can be used to determine the possible future trends and the number of resources that may be required to manage the situation. Statisticians may also model a system or program that may show the best precautions to take to reduce the spread of the diseases through the application of data collected. Different processes in the health care system rely on statistical data. For example, when writing a treatment or medication report, healthcare professionals often use the data that have been collected over a given period (Milic et al., 2016). As a result, healthcare professionals need to have basic or advanced knowledge in statistics to create meaningful reports and make statistically significant conclusions. The modern treatment models rely on statistical data. For instance, the development of artificial intelligence that can facilitate the medication process depends on the data and statistical trends in the healthcare system.

Before a research process is considered medically significant, it must always pass through the statistical tests to ensure that it is

HLT 362 Discussion Historical Application of Statistics in Health Care

HLT 362 Discussion Historical Application of Statistics in Health Care

statistically significant. All the above processes require significant statistical knowledge to help in the accurate analysis of every scenario from study design, data collection, data analysis, interpretation, and writing of a comprehensive medical report. Most of the medical research companies such as Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) depend on the statistical knowledge when it comes to drug trials, research on various diseases and study of the best medical interventions mechanisms that can lead to effective patient outcomes (Milic et al., 2016). As a result, there are always teams of epidemiologists and biostatisticians who have advanced knowledge in statistics, nature of diseases, and other healthcare activities. With the use of data in the treatment process, there is always the need for healthcare workers to show competency in healthcare informatics.

The application of statistics in the healthcare system is significant to quality improvement. To ensure efficiency in the healthcare system, there is always the need for healthcare professionals in collaboration with the researcher to carry out research to determine areas that require improvements. The use of data can, therefore, informs the ideal solution to the problems facing healthcare institutions. Therefore, the result of the clinical analysis can be used to improve the quality of care and the general treatment processes. Research processes may inform the safety measures, health promotion, and best leadership approaches that can best improve general care.

With the emergence of diseases and different complications in the healthcare settings, the provision of healthcare services often turn to be a challenge; as a result, there is always the need for healthcare professionals to identify the right strategies that can be used to improve the treatment outcome and the general safety. Therefore, statistical knowledge is required to undertake research using the clinical data available to determine the best strategies that can be used to deal with the increasing problems.

In my organization, given the introduction of technology and numerous research processes, I will mostly utilize statistics in almost all the activities, from data collection, clinical analysis, medical research, clinical reporting. The statistical knowledge will also be critical in the development of treatment and care models in line with the needs of the patients. In healthcare settings, the clinical data can be obtained from the databases. Also, in cases where there is the need to study health determinants within the communities, research models can be designed whereby data may be collected from the community members through surveys. Data analysis results are often used in the decision-making processes; they may be applied to inform quality improvement, tend in the operational processes, and the best treatment and care processes to be adopted.


All these medical approaches rely on the application of data. With the development of modern technologies in the healthcare system, data collection is usually done to ensure that patient’s records are well updated for further treatment processes. Patient’s data are usually collected from the point of admission to the time of discharge. All the above activities are statistical approaches that are meant to collect data to inform decision-making processes.


Jahan, S., Al-Saigul, A. M., & Suliman, A. A. (2016). Attitudes to statistics in primary health care physicians, Qassim province. Primary health care research & development17(4), 405-414.

Milic, N. M., Masic, S., Milin-Lazovic, J., Trajkovic, G., Bukumiric, Z., Savic, M., … & Ilic, A. (2016). The importance of medical students’ attitudes regarding cognitive competence for teaching applied statistics: multi-site study and meta-analysis. PLoS One11(10), e0164439.

I really enjoyed reading your discussion post and I found it very interesting especially 1918 their was the influenza pandemic which killed 50 million that’s crazy well with statistics are able improve peoples lives and improve overall healthcare because statistic allows us to monitor people health with test like lab work and with that it allows the doctor to see how a patient is doing overall it also allows to find new ways to improve healthcare like for instance when covid-19 happen and everyone had to stay in their house but healthcare decided to do telemedicine which allows you to see you doctor from home through video call which is amazing because you don’t have to leave from your own comfort of home good job Irene.


Hi Irene

Florence Nightingale used a statistical approach to decrease the mortality rate of British troops in Crimea. Florence Nightingale collected data and information during the war in an effort to show that individuals during that time were seven times more likely to die from diseases in combat than die in combat (Hagan,2018). Clara Barton applied the same analysis in the United States during the civil war. Louis Pasteur used statistics in his research of microbes and the germ theory in order to create penicillin. Statistical data is collected and reported in clinical trials of new technologies and treatments to get products that benefit against diseases risks. Evidence-based research also always relies on statistical data and research.


Hagan, J.L. (2018). The Use of Statistics in Healthcare Quality Improvement. JOJ Nurse Health Care, 8(5), 1-3. DOI: 10.19080/JOJNHC.2018.08.555746

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Topic 1 DQ 1

Aug 15-17, 2022

Discuss the historical application of statistics in the field of health care. Describe an example, other than Florence Nightingale’s contributions, where statistical application has greatly influenced or changed health care operations or practice.



Health Statistics provide information for understanding, monitoring, improving, and planning the use of resources to improve people’s lives, provide services and promote their well-being. Statistics are used in healthcare for research, quality improvement, inequalities in healthcare, risk analysis, inventory management and cost, resource utilization, patient length of stay, patient satisfaction, clinical trials, morbidity and mortality, effects of new treatments, measuring change, laboratory analysis, education, and much more.

Statistics have been utilized in healthcare since at least the 19th century. Florence Nightingale used a statistical approach to decrease the mortality rate of British troops in Crimea. Her meticulous records were a key to present-day statistical quality measurement, and she was an innovator in the collection, tabulation, interpretation, and graphical display of descriptive statistics. She named her visual data display a “Coxcomb,” known today as a pie- chart (Sheingold & Hahn, 2014). Clara Barton applied the same analysis in the United States during the Civil War.

Louis Pasteur applied statistics in his research of microbes and the “germ theory” to create penicillin. This evidence led to the wide-scale adoption of antiseptic practices by physicians and hospitals throughout Europe and eventually in the U.S. Pasteur’s research also led to the development of “pasteurization,” which utilizes heat to destroy harmful microbes in perishable food while leaving the food undamaged (Sheingold & Hahn, 2014).

Dr. Rupert Blue was responsible for providing leadership in America during the worst disease outbreak in U.S. history. The Influenza Pandemic of 1918 killed fifty (50) million or 1/5 of the world’s population, representing more people than died during World War I. During the Influenza Pandemic, Dr. Blue’s quality tools were quarantine, mandatory medical exams for all immigrants entering the country, communication in the form of weekly newsletters that contained information about the latest outbreaks, and the results of influenza research conducted at the Hygienic Laboratory which continues to exist today (Sheingold & Hahn, 2014).

The medical records during the 1918 influenza pandemic inform how we should respond to a similar widespread outbreak of biological disease and provide data on the long-term effects of the flu on a pregnant woman.


Sheingold, B. H., Hahn, J. A. (2014). The history of healthcare quality: The first 100 years 1860- 1960. International Journal of Africa Nursing Sciences. Vol. 1. Pages 18 – 22. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijans.2014.05.002


Hi Irene,

In 1992, Anderson and May published Infectious Disease of Humans, documenting their work in mathematical modeling transmission of infectious diseases, which was critically important to understanding the ongoing work in fighting the global HIV epidemic, as well as malaria and tuberculosis. Subsequent work on modeling diseases has been used to monitor and model the impact of influenza outbreaks. During the 1990s, laboratory techniques improved enough so that strains of viruses could be mapped and links made to the epidemiologic investigation.



Anderson RM, May RM. Infectious diseases of humans: dynamics and control. New York, NY: Oxford University Press; 1992.

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