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Data Warehouse Governance Programs in Healthcare Settings: A Literature Review and a Call to Action


Thomas E. Elliott ,

Essentia Institute of Rural Health
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John H. Holmes,

University of Pennsylvania
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Arthur J. Davidson,

Denver Public Health
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Pierre-Andre La Chance,

Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research
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Andrew F. Nelson,

HealthPartners Institute of Education and Research
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John F. Steiner

Kaiser Permanente Colorado Institute for Health Research
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Purpose: Given the extensive data stored in healthcare data warehouses, data warehouse governance policies are needed to ensure data integrity and privacy. This review examines the current state of the data warehouse governance literature as it applies to healthcare data warehouses, identifies knowledge gaps, provides recommendations, and suggests approaches for further research.

Methods: A comprehensive literature search using five data bases, journal article title-search, and citation searches was conducted between 1997 and 2012. Data warehouse governance documents from two healthcare systems in theUSA were also reviewed. A modified version of nine components from the Data Governance Institute Framework for data warehouse governance guided the qualitative analysis.

Results: Fifteen articles were retrieved. Only three were related to healthcare settings, each of which addressed only one of the nine framework components. Of the remaining 12 articles, 10 addressed between one and seven framework components and the remainder addressed none. Each of the two data warehouse governance plans obtained from healthcare systems in theUSA addressed a subset of the framework components, and between them they covered all nine.

Conclusions: While published data warehouse governance policies are rare, the 15 articles and two healthcare organizational documents reviewed in this study may provide guidance to creating such policies. Additional research is needed in this area to ensure that data warehouse governance polices are feasible and effective. The gap between the development of data warehouses in healthcare settings and formal governance policies is substantial, as evidenced by the sparse literature in this domain.

How to Cite: Elliott TE, Holmes JH, Davidson AJ, La Chance P-A, Nelson AF, Steiner JF. Data Warehouse Governance Programs in Healthcare Settings: A Literature Review and a Call to Action. eGEMs (Generating Evidence & Methods to improve patient outcomes). 2013;1(1):15. DOI:
Published on 08 Oct 2013.
Peer Reviewed


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