Cloud technologies have made their way into the healthcare industry and for good reasons. The adoption of cloud computing has been increasing at a frenetic pace for the past few years. From a business standpoint, cloud computing has proven to be effective in cutting down operational costs while allowing healthcare providers to deliver high-quality, personalized care.
According to recent research, the global market for cloud technologies in the healthcare industry is expected to grow by $25.54 billion during 2020-2024. And the global pandemic has only augmented this trend.
Although the side effects of this pandemic are still unfolding, it’s becoming clear that not all industries will suffer in the same way, with some even showing promising growth. The healthcare and technology sector seems to have benefitted in many ways, making the global cloud computing market very promising in the upcoming years.
As social distancing became the new norm, medical providers had to rethink new ways to interact with patients, and trends that were slowly developing, such as telehealth, have skyrocketed in the past few months.
The patients, who are accustomed to instantaneous delivery of services, are now able to get the same response from the healthcare industry as well. Cloud technology also amps up patient engagement with their health plans by giving them more rights over their healthcare data, therefore resulting in better patient outcomes.
This new reality, together with changes in patient expectations have transformed cloud computing into a crucial factor that not only improved patient care, drove efficiency, and eliminating waste, but also ensuring their safety. On that note, here are a few ways cloud computing is impacting the healthcare industry.
Here’s a challenge that is familiar to companies across all industries: tight budget, which forces them to invest in backdated technologies just to keep their business continuing over innovations.
Since cloud computing runs on a subscription-based model, healthcare organizations can cut down costs from purchasing expensive equipment and systems. Additionally, by switching to a cloud server, healthcare providers can minimize their cost by using the cloud service provider’s resources.
Perhaps the greatest concern for health providers when switching to the cloud is security. For example, how secure is it to have all your patient data and apps stored in a third-party cloud server? Especially when healthcare organizations need to comply with regulatory frameworks like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to protect sensitive health information, or like Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to protect sensitive personal data.
But when done right, cloud servers can actually help increase the security of healthcare providers. If you consider on-premises software or equipment solutions, if the equipment or system fails, healthcare institutions may lose all their data. A potential risk that may be too costly for healthcare institutions
Cloud solutions, on the other hand, not only allows users to instantly access any information remotely but also includes backup and disaster recovery features, which can help healthcare providers to prevent any data loss and minimize the downtime for their staff.
Many modern cloud service providers nowadays offer compliance and risk management, audit, and monitoring services to protect against unauthorized access and breaches. In the end, it’s all about choosing the correct vendor and analyzing their services.
Healthcare providers deal with a large number of patient data, electronic medical records, patient portals, mobile applications, and big data analytics every day. That’s a lot of information to manage and analyze, and not all of which can be stored in-house equipment. Cloud solutions enable healthcare providers to store all the information while also allowing them to save money from maintaining physical servers.
Interoperability aims at integrating all the information in siloed systems throughout the healthcare system, irrespective of the point of storage or origin. Because cloud services provide interoperability, patient data is readily available for distribution and facilitates better insights for healthcare planning and delivery.
Cloud computing allows healthcare providers to gain easy access to patient data collected from myriad sources, share it with all the important stakeholders, and send out prescriptions and treatment protocols promptly. It also overrides the geographical barriers and allows specialists to review their cases from any location.
Unlike conventional self-hosted models, cloud computing offers healthcare providers the flexibility to increase or decrease their data storage depending on the number of information flows. This allows healthcare organizations to adapt their technology to peak seasons. For example, this coronavirus pandemic, where there is a massive number of patient information flowing. This also helps providers to save time and money from purchasing the latest hardware or software updates.
Cloud computing still has a long way to go in the healthcare industry. Combining evolving technologies, such as artificial intelligence and the internet of medical things enhances efficiency and opens up multiple paths of streamlining healthcare delivery. With so many benefits, there is no reason to not go cloud.
About the author: Riyan N. Alam is currently working as a Digital Marketing Analyst for M2SYS Technology, a cloud-biometric company. As a heath-tech enthusiast, Riyan frequently blogs in RightPatient and CloudApper.
Target keyword: benefits of cloud computing