Ways cloud technology has changed the healthcare industry

May 21st, 2019
Ways cloud technology has changed the healthcare industry

Cloud technology is quickly becoming commonplace in healthcare because it helps hospitals handle comprehensive patient data. But perhaps you’re still having second thoughts about moving your practice to the cloud — and for good reasons. You must be thinking of several legacy systems and the highly sensitive protected healthcare information (PHI) you must handle.

But these difficulties must not stop you, especially if you hire a trusted managed IT services provider (MSP). They’ll help you migrate to the cloud seamlessly so that you enjoy its benefits in no time.

Efficient and secure storage of PHI

Electronic health records (EHR) make storing, archiving, and accessing PHI faster and easier for every healthcare provider. This way, they can assess a patient’s complaint, refer to their past health conditions, and make quick decisions regarding their treatment, without the need to scour through heaps of old charts.

The cloud also makes collaboration easier as several doctors can simultaneously access PHI and compare notes on patients with just a single click. This is a huge step from relying on faxed or mailed documents. Now that patient files are right at the tip of their fingers, doctors can focus more on patient care.

Also, with the healthcare software programs connected through application programming interfaces (APIs) within your cloud infrastructure, you can have a new private healthcare network that’s secure and proactively managed by IT experts. This ensures your safety against data breaches and cyberattacks; these should be your primary concerns if you want to be HIPAA-compliant.

Streamlined collaboration

It can be difficult to share PHI and maintain HIPAA and data security at the same time. But with internet-connected devices, video conferencing, and communication apps, the cloud allows for better, faster, and safer collaboration among healthcare professionals.

What’s more, streamlined collaboration brings about streamlined patient care. This means patients won’t need to be interviewed or fill out stacks of forms each time they are readmitted to a hospital. Their medical history will always be secure and accessible in the cloud.

Migrating to the cloud also allows for real-time updates on patients’ conditions. Considering that doctors have heavy workloads and graveyard shifts, they can find it troublesome to check their messaging apps several times during the day for updates on their patients. With documents being centralized, sending an updated version of a patient’s vital signs and condition to all team members can be done in real time. This makes sure that all information is in the system to avoid gaps in patient care.

Advancements in patient education and clinical research

Healthcare doesn’t stop when patients leave the hospital. It’s also the doctors’ job to educate them and provide better treatments for them in the future. This is made easier when patients can also access their own data in the cloud. They can spot discrepancies, correct them, and communicate with their doctors in case they have questions about their treatment.

Digital data can also be used and analyzed for medical research. For instance, researchers can trace a pattern when there’s an epidemic, study a patient’s condition in depth if scientists are doing a case study, or assess the prevalence of a disease in an area.

Without electronic PHI, they’ll have to do several face-to-face interviews and in-person surveys for their data collection. But with the cloud, they’ll have all the information they need in internet-accessible databases to develop better drugs, gain more knowledge about rare diseases, and ultimately improve the quality of healthcare.

Is your healthcare organization ready to switch to EHR? Contact Integrated Technology Services now. Our expert assistance ensures secure transitioning of all your on-premise data to the cloud.