By Lincoln Russell, managing director, Core BTS.
The last 24 months have transformed the role of the cloud in healthcare. Before, software solutions were usually only accessible on-prem. There was no real impetus for healthcare organizations to modernize their disconnected systems when they were contained within a facility’s four walls. For clinicians laser-focused on patient care, trying new tools from the IT department was a low priority. Both of these factors made the adoption of modern cloud solutions extremely slow.
But the rise of telehealth and remote work during the pandemic changed all that. Now, efficient collaboration across many locations is a business need — and a key to effective patient care. More healthcare organizations are making the decision to shift their systems to the cloud to facilitate easier file sharing, more streamlined workflows, and other benefits.
However, transitioning to the cloud isn’t as simple as flipping a switch. For healthcare organizations in particular, modernizing technology systems requires careful change management and a well-thought-out governance plan. Skip these steps and your organization risks missing out on the full benefits of cloud.
The sources of healthcare organizations’ technical debt
Data security and regulatory compliance are top concerns for healthcare providers when it comes to technology solutions — and for good reason. Healthcare organizations handle large quantities of highly sensitive personally identifiable information (PII), and both HIPAA and data privacy regulations like the GDPR and CCPA carry heavy penalties for violations that lead to a breach.
However, these legitimate concerns have led many healthcare organizations into deep technical debt. A widespread — and inaccurate — perception that on-prem solutions are more secure than cloud delayed adoption of modern, streamlined workflow and file management solutions. At the same time, concerns over compliance drove the adoption of pinpoint solutions from vendors able to claim their products were specifically designed for healthcare customers.