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Cloud can improve healthcare operations

The healthcare industry is rapidly evolving due to the proliferation of mobile devices, electronic medical records and other digital tools that can support remote connectivity without impairing collaboration or overall operations. In many cases, a cloud infrastructure is the underlying technology that brings myriad next-generation solutions together in hospitals and other facilities.

As the demand for delivering high-quality services for a lower cost continues to increase in the healthcare sector, more decision-makers are turning to the cloud for answers, according to a blog post by IT expert Rick Blaisdell. By using a specific set of hosted services that cater to the unique demands of a particular hospital, research clinic or private institution, executives will likely meet a number of demands needed to keep costs down and sensitive information safe.

Improving communication through the cloud
Because public cloud services are hosted off-site, endpoints from around the world can connect to the network without much hassle, Blaisdell noted. This is especially important for healthcare companies today, as executives continue to adopt bring your own device and other mobile initiatives.

The centralized infrastructure also improves collaboration by providing disparate parties with synchronized information in real time, Blaisdell asserted. This means multiple healthcare service providers can work together without individuals having to worry about sharing inaccurate or outdated data.

Increased speed and decreased costs
In the cloud, applications and data can be upgraded and improved much faster than traditional technologies, as the centralized network and off-site management means minimal service interruption. Accessing tools in the cloud is also often much easier to do than legacy data centers, according to Blaisdell. This is critical for healthcare organizations that need to be fast and efficient.

Because public cloud computing is managed off-site, decision-makers don't need to invest heavily in hardware and equipment, allowing them to save substantial amounts of money - a necessity in healthcare.

A report by Transparency Market Research revealed that the healthcare cloud industry is forecast to expand at a compound annual growth rate of more than 21 percent between 2012 and 2018, eventually generating nearly $7 billion in revenue, up from $1.8 billion in 2011.

As the demands for healthcare organizations continue to evolve, administrators will likely turn to the cloud to meet their requirements without jeopardizing the security of mission-critical assets and information.

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