The healthcare industry is undergoing a digital transformation. Technology radically changes how healthcare is delivered and managed, from telehealth visits to wearable patient monitoring devices to advanced data analytics. A key enabler of this transformation is the adoption of cloud-based solutions. As medical organizations aim to future-proof their IT infrastructure, cloud solutions for healthcare industry offer scalability, flexibility, and innovation to meet emerging needs.
Why Cloud for Healthcare?
Cloud-based healthcare solutions offer many advantages over traditional on-premises systems. The cloud allows healthcare IT teams to shift from a capital expenditure model to an operating expense model, reducing upfront infrastructure costs. Organizations only pay for the monthly computing resources, scaling up and down to match demand. The cloud provides instant access to computing power, storage, and applications without lengthy hardware procurement and deployment projects. This agility is invaluable for innovating quickly.
Healthcare organizations are dealing with rapidly growing datasets from electronic health records (EHRs), medical images, genomics data, and more. Cloud platforms make it easier to collect, store, and extract insights from big data using analytics and AI. The scalability to cost-efficiently store vast volumes of data is a major benefit. Further, cloud infrastructure offers built-in redundancy and disaster recovery capabilities to ensure data integrity and availability.
For clinicians, cloud-based healthcare software delivers advantages through better accessibility and collaboration. Cloud applications can be accessed from any internet-connected device, including mobile devices at the point of care. This allows healthcare teams to collaborate and consult with specialists remotely easily. Cloud platforms help remove technological and geographic barriers between care providers to improve patient outcomes.
Future-Proofing with Cloud Agility
The healthcare landscape will continue evolving at a rapid pace. As value-based care programs incentivize healthcare organizations to deliver better outcomes at lower costs, analytics, and patient-centered digital solutions will become increasingly important. Some emerging technologies include wearable biosensors, clinical decision support tools leveraging AI, voice-powered virtual nursing assistants, and telehealth on consumer devices.
To build and deploy innovative solutions like these at scale, healthcare IT infrastructure needs cloud agility. On-premises systems with a lengthy update and hardware refresh cycles cannot keep pace with changing technology and regulations. Cloud platforms allow faster rollouts of upgrades, new features, security patches, and compliance changes.
By reducing deployment friction, cloud solutions healthcare enable IT teams to focus on innovating rather than “keeping the lights on.” Healthcare software vendors are also increasingly developing solutions exclusively for the cloud, tapping tools and services that speed up building and deployment. This is fueling rapid innovation across healthcare. The Empeek team thinks solutions purpose-built for the cloud better adapt to evolving industry needs through continuous delivery and incremental improvements.
Mitigating Security & Compliance Risks
Despite the clear benefits, security and compliance concerns are top barriers to cloud adoption in healthcare. Medical data is highly sensitive, so assurance around data protection is critical. Healthcare organizations must also adhere to regulations like HIPAA and HITECH in the US and country-specific rules globally. Failing to meet requirements can result in heavy penalties.
However, with the right strategy and vendor partnerships, healthcare organizations can overcome these hurdles and unlock innovation through the cloud. Modern cloud platforms incorporate robust access controls, data encryption, network security capabilities, and auditing tools. Leading cloud providers stay continuously compliant with the latest industry regulations and certifications. Rather than building niche expertise around security and compliance in-house, healthcare IT teams can leverage cloud platforms designed specifically for highly regulated environments.
Adopting cloud-based healthcare technology solutions, analytics tools, and integration platforms helps future-proof the foundational data layer. This strategy simplifies adding new datasets and applications over time to scale innovation while keeping sensitive data protected behind one compliant cloud platform. With comprehensive logging and user activity monitoring, unauthorized data access events can also be rapidly detected and remediated.
A Partnership for the Future
Transitioning healthcare delivery from reactive treatment to preventative care centered on the individual requires seamlessly connecting many technologies and data sources. The possibilities are exponentially expanding from home health monitoring IoT devices to wellness apps to advanced clinical decision support algorithms. Cloud solutions provide the adaptability for disparate systems to work intelligently together.
Through cloud platform partnerships that help balance innovation with pragmatic data governance, healthcare IT is preparing for the next wave of disruption. This journey should start with a unified data foundation in the cloud. Aligning to industry regulations and cybersecurity best practices will also continue playing a pivotal role. While the specifics of future technologies remain uncertain, the right cloud strategy will equip healthcare providers to assimilate revolutionary capabilities down the road. With patient outcomes and operational efficiency at the forefront, cloud-based systems lay the groundwork for healthcare’s digital evolution.
Roman is the co-founder of Empeek who brings a breadth of knowledge to build, scale and transform healthcare organizations. He specializes in revitalizing struggling businesses and turning them into profitable enterprises. By emphasizing automation and effectively navigating the transition from startup to a sustainable and scalable model, Roman drives remarkable transformations to ensure long-term success.