Industries are rapidly moving towards a digital transformation as technology evolves, with healthcare seeing a major shift in cloud-based solutions.
According to Gartner, the worldwide end-user spending on public cloud services is forecast to grow 18.4% in 2021, largely driven by the pandemic. In fact, the COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the adoption of cloud services in healthcare to support remote work and collaboration.
The healthcare industry typically is the last to adopt new technologies. This is due in part to different factors, ranging from the complexity of healthcare organizations to data compliance regulations. Yet with the sudden health crisis, healthcare organizations are faced with challenges that their legacy systems are unable to alleviate. Here are just a few reasons why healthcare organizations are moving to the cloud.
Innovation in Delivering Care
Cloud platforms are changing the way patient care is handled. The ability to quickly and easily develop healthcare and patient applications that are securely hosted, easy to use, and capable of analyzing patient data is a key indicator of why organizations are moving to the cloud.
Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI) in the cloud has become essential for healthcare organizations to auto-detect patterns, predict clinical outcomes, and quickly analyze large amounts of data.
Telehealth isn’t new but has been increasingly adopted across healthcare organizations within the past decade.
And with the onset of the global pandemic, telehealth has been a go-to for doctors checking in with patients. In fact, the solution witnessed an overall increase of 33% for visits in 2020 compared to 2019. With virtual visits being the cornerstone of healthcare in recent years, legacy systems and infrastructure are no longer a viable option.
Additionally, remote work has increased significantly, allowing for better resource management and effective workflow across healthcare organizations.
The amount of patient data increases significantly each year. In fact, RBC Capital Market projects that by 2025, the compound annual growth rate of data for healthcare will reach 36%. The need for a scalable data warehouse, which manages and analyzes large quantities of data across different parts of organizations, is a must.
Cloud platforms are able to scale easily and efficiently as needed, leading to insights in real-time. Additionally, cloud solutions are able to break data silos and offer accessible data across healthcare sectors. Healthcare organizations that are rapidly growing are moving to the cloud for capabilities such as scalability. With the increasing amount of patient and other data, a modern data warehouse as part of the cloud can help to alleviate the pressure that legacy systems simply cannot.
Security for Healthcare Data
It’s no secret that the amount of data collected by healthcare organizations is large and extremely sensitive. And it doesn’t always revolve around patients either. In fact, some important data that is collected by various healthcare organizations include:
- Electronic health records
- Administrative data
- Claims data
- Patient / Disease registries
- Health surveys
- Clinical trials data
In the past, paper records were used and stored in filing cabinets on-site, leaving room open for those records to be stolen or damaged. The lack of security surrounding these documents was incredibly risky. And while many healthcare organizations have now opted for more digital record-keeping, the threat of security breaches and lost documents still remain.
Given the sensitive nature of health information and other types of healthcare data, the data and the systems it resides in are critical.
Many cloud platforms offer extensive security measures that comply with regulatory requirements such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Further than that, threats evolve, and with innovation as a major part of cloud solutions and technologies, protection from those threats can adapt as well.
Lowering Cost on the Cloud
Data kept on-premises is an investment. There are costs associated with hardware and software and additional IT infrastructure that allows for the access and secure storage of data at all times.
Healthcare organizations are moving to the cloud for various reasons, with cost obviously playing a major part. Cloud-based healthcare solutions are able to handle the administration, construction, and maintenance of cloud data storage services. This enables healthcare organizations to reduce costs, while also providing additional benefits such as enabling data-driven decisions.
Lowered costs on the cloud don’t stop at just infrastructure. For example, telehealth appointments enable cost-effective healthcare delivery and efficiency with the added benefits of providers having more flexibility throughout each day.
Transforming Healthcare Organizations
It’s clear why healthcare organizations are rapidly moving away from legacy on-premises infrastructures and are adopting cloud-based solutions. With the onset of the global pandemic, organizations looking for a digital transformation were thrust into a world where telehealth and remote work became the norm.
And while some of these businesses may continue to utilize outdated systems and infrastructure, the benefits of cloud computing and solutions are evident for healthcare. Data is at the heart of healthcare, especially when it comes to patients. So, adopting a flexible and scalable infrastructure to house and analyze that data becomes key to better care for patients.
It’s also crucial to point out that accelerated cloud adoption in healthcare also lowers costs and enables better resource utilization. On top of that, a cloud provider’s security features are much more important than ever. The rapid flow of information and data across healthcare organizations intersects with the need for a bolstered security infrastructure and management.
With so many cloud providers and solutions available, it can be difficult to know where to start. Thankfully, Pandera can help.
Pandera, a Google Cloud Premier Partner, enables healthcare organizations to rapidly move to the cloud with ease. We specialize in deploying HIPAA-ready cloud infrastructure so that healthcare organizations can focus on what matters most—improving patient health and outcomes.
Our Landing Zone Accelerator is designed exclusively for Google Cloud and offers a readily available, enterprise-grade healthcare solution to meet your cloud transformation objectives.
To learn more about Pandera and how we help healthcare organizations accelerate their cloud journey, please contact us today!