The healthcare industry is one of the most challenging and rapidly changing industries out there. The digital healthcare revolution is here and it’s not going away. Hospital and health system leaders must find ways to remain relevant in the age of digital or risk falling behind. To keep pace with this digital shift, healthcare organizations are turning to cloud-based solutions.
Cloud-based healthcare is a process that incorporates cloud computing technologies in healthcare services to achieve cost savings, easier data sharing, personalization of medicines, telehealth applications, and other benefits. Healthcare providers are now using cloud computing to increase efficiency, optimize workflows, reduce costs associated with healthcare delivery, and provide customization to care plans for better outcomes. Cloud computing allows healthcare providers easy access to the data of patients collected from multiple sources, sharing with relevant stakeholders, and dispensing timely prescriptions and care protocols. Cloud computing allows healthcare facilities to keep EHRs, avoiding additional costs associated with maintaining physical servers.
Healthcare providers face numerous challenges in managing and maintaining their IT infrastructure. The constant need to upgrade software and hardware, manage data storage, and ensure HIPAA compliance can be a daunting task. Cloud migration offers an effective solution to these challenges, helping healthcare organizations achieve cheaper, more efficient, and more secure health tech solutions.
One of the primary benefits of cloud computing in healthcare is improved patient engagement. Cloud technologies allow healthcare providers to access patient health data from multiple sources, share it with key stakeholders, and provide protocols in real-time. This leads to better patient outcomes and a more secure healthcare infrastructure.
With the help of the cloud, doctors have the ability to better engage patients, giving them access to real-time health data, test results, and even doctors’ notes. Patients can monitor their health status through mobile apps and share data with their healthcare providers in real-time. This allows doctors to provide more personalized care and make more informed decisions about their patients’ health.
Cloud technologies can assist with developing appropriate patient monitoring programs remotely. Cloud-based systems can be used to diagnose patients in real-time, with patients sharing their data and receiving correct recommendations from doctors at the right times.
The healthcare industry uses cloud-based management information systems for providing better care for patients, managing HR, better-requesting services, as well as in billing and finances. Using the cloud provides the healthcare industry with an opportunity to enhance services for patients, share information more easily, increase operating efficiencies, and optimize costs.
Adopting cloud-based computing for healthcare lowers overhead for tasks such as updating records. By adopting cloud servers, healthcare organizations can also lower costs using resources from cloud providers. Cloud computing allows healthcare providers to scale up or down as per their needs, ensuring business continuity and cost optimization.
Only cloud-based solutions provide healthcare providers and patients with the access they need while maintaining compliance with HIPAA. Cloud-based telehealth systems and applications enable the easier exchange of health data, increase affordability, and deliver healthcare coverage to patients in preventative, therapeutic, as well as recovery phases.
Cloud-based applications and telehealth systems aid in the sharing of healthcare data, provide health coverage to patients during treatment, prevention, and recovery, and enhance availability. Cloud computing has helped ensure that each healthcare provider has access to a data storage solution that properly secures patients’ confidential information. Additionally, cloud-based disaster recovery solutions ensure that healthcare organizations can quickly recover from any disaster, reducing downtime and improving patient care.
Cloud migration has enabled easier access to patient data to disseminate and derive insights that can promote better healthcare planning and delivery from anywhere. As healthcare information is meant to remain private, through the cloud, data can safely be shared across all the relevant stakeholders of the healthcare such as doctors, nurses, and caregivers live and in real-time with low latency.
Cloud solutions enable healthcare providers to easily integrate different systems and devices, leading to easier interoperability between healthcare systems. This ensures that healthcare providers have access to patient data across different systems and devices, improving patient outcomes.
To get the benefits of cloud solutions, healthcare organizations must embrace AI, IoT, and data management technologies. Cloud computing, combined with fast-evolving technologies such as big data analytics, AI, and IoT for medical things, increases efficiency and opens multiple pathways for streamlining healthcare delivery.
Cloud makes it easier for technologies used in healthcare such as EHRs, mobile apps, patient portals, IoT devices, and big data analytics. Just as cloud computing will allow healthcare providers to harness Big Data and analytics to run their facilities, in the future.
While this shift to the cloud has been rapid and has resulted in better outcomes for the majority of organizations, it comes with its challenges, the major being the migration challenges. As a consultant, the major task is to prepare for the common migration challenges in cloud adoption such as:
To assess cloud readiness, organizations need to consider the following 2 factors:
If two apps speak to each other frequently with high dependency on one another, migrating one without the other might pose a significant risk due to the latency for them to communicate. Some apps can be tailored to the cloud easily, however, the organizations might have programs running on a mainframe, for example, which is not a simple copy, paste, and press plat type of migration.
Cloud migration works differently for different organizations as each organization might have different cloud requirements. Hence it is essential for organizations to strategize their cloud migration in order to achieve the best outcome from migration. Cloud Migration Strategy Framework is a strategic approach to migrating data and applications from on-premises environments to the cloud.
Although the cloud migration strategy might differ for two organizations, however, the framework can be generalized into the following six phases:
Data Analysis and Assessment: Organizations should start their cloud journey keeping in mind their business objectives & analyzing their data requirements. One common aspect of data requirements for health tech solutions is data security & privacy hence, healthcare organizations should make sure that their cloud is HIPAA compliant. There are several such data requirements that can enable organizations in strategizing a cloud migration framework that is best suited for them. At Silstone Health we use our extensive and diverse experience of working with 100+ health-tech startups to help our customers by consulting them through this phase.
Data Mapping: Data mapping is frequently used in the health-tech industry to share data collected from two data sources, such as EMR or EHR. In today’s healthcare environment, accurate documentation of a patient’s problem list is critical for improving clinical outcomes and optimizing reimbursement because it can be used to perform analytics from data sets, forecasting, drug trials, case studies, and more. This data has the potential to impact patient safety as well as a variety of downstream healthcare operations, ranging from financial planning and billing to care coordination and population health initiatives.
It is critical to map the data captured from EMR and EHR in order to understand what will happen when the data is moved to another system, as this will aid organizations in migrating their data from one system to another.
Data mapping can help identify any potential problems that might arise when transferring a system’s data and can help find ways around them.
Data Export and Import: This is the most important phase of cloud migration. The strategy framework is designed to help organizations determine what data they need to move and then how they should export and import that data. At Silstone Health we make sure to invest most of the time in cloud migration in the above-explained phases so that our customers can export and import their data i.e enabled with the following best practices.
After making sure of the best practices, the organization must follow the following steps for successful cloud migration.
Application Assessment: To plan a migration “journey,” you must first gather information about enterprise applications in order to support analyses of their suitability for cloud migration. Setting up indicators that measure the usability, cost, quality, performance, and risk of applications is one method. While evaluating the application, we must consider how cloud migration affects the following parameters.
These assessments help you make strategic decisions on whether to replace or upgrade applications.
Application dependency Mapping: Application dependency mapping, like data mapping, enables teams to accurately scope the modernization effort and manage the cloud migration project in the most efficient manner.
Application mapping aids in the migration of the application’s functional and technical dependencies, such as code dependencies. This enables development teams to confidently work on cloud migration at the same time, knowing that any changes they make are correct and safe.
Prior to executing their cloud migration plans, developers can see how things connect and what will be impacted by application dependency mapping.
At Silstone Health we do an in-depth analysis with our partners & begin by asking some of the cloud apps readiness-related questions like:
Application Migration: Organizations that have completed application assessment and mapping have a clear picture of their application’s suitability for cloud migration and are usually aligned with their cloud migration strategy.
They have progressed to the point where they can successfully demonstrate how the following parameters would benefit from cloud migration.
At Silstone Health, after organizations get this understanding of their applications, we consult with them in providing them with the most efficient path for application migration. The right path helps in achieving the optimal result which may impact certain aspects of the application positively, such as once teams have fully migrated to the cloud, the right approach enables them to stay aware of the structure of their applications and troubleshoot changes as they occur.
With the growth of cloud technology, cloud adoption has become essential for businesses to remain competitive and deliver services in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. However, implementing a cloud strategy is not a one-size-fits-all solution, and organizations must carefully plan and execute a strategy that aligns with their specific needs and objectives. This is where the Cloud Adoption Framework (CAF) comes into play. The CAF provides organizations with a comprehensive set of guidelines and best practices to follow during the cloud adoption process. Here are the six stages of the Cloud Adoption Framework:
Strategy: The first stage of the CAF is to create a cloud strategy that aligns with the organization’s business objectives. This involves identifying the benefits and risks of cloud adoption and evaluating which cloud deployment model (public, private, or hybrid) is the best fit for the organization’s needs. This stage also involves developing a business case for cloud adoption and creating a roadmap that outlines the steps involved in the migration process.
Plan: The second stage of the CAF involves creating a detailed plan for the migration process. This includes identifying the workloads and applications that will be migrated to the cloud, defining the migration approach, and creating a migration plan that outlines the timelines, budget, and resource requirements. This stage also involves creating a risk management plan that addresses potential issues that may arise during the migration process.
Ready: The third stage of the CAF involves preparing the organization’s infrastructure and applications for cloud migration. This includes assessing the organization’s existing infrastructure and identifying any changes that need to be made to support cloud adoption. This stage also involves assessing the organization’s applications and determining which ones can be migrated to the cloud and which ones require modification or re-architecture. Additionally, this stage involves preparing the organization’s staff for the migration process by providing training and support.
Adopt: The fourth stage of the CAF involves executing the migration plan and adopting cloud technology. This involves migrating the identified workloads and applications to the cloud and testing them to ensure they are functioning as expected. This stage also involves monitoring the migration process and addressing any issues that arise during the migration.
Govern: The fifth stage of the CAF involves implementing governance processes and controls to ensure that the organization’s cloud environment is secure, compliant, and optimized. This involves defining policies and procedures for cloud usage, implementing security controls, and monitoring the environment for compliance with regulatory requirements. This stage also involves optimizing the cloud environment to ensure it is cost-effective and efficient.
Manage: The final stage of the CAF involves managing the cloud environment on an ongoing basis. This involves monitoring the environment for performance and security, making necessary changes to optimize the environment, and managing costs. This stage also involves continuously assessing the organization’s cloud strategy and making adjustments as needed to ensure that it remains aligned with the organization’s business objectives.
In conclusion, cloud adoption is a complex process that requires careful planning and execution. The Cloud Adoption Framework provides organizations with a comprehensive set of guidelines and best practices to follow during the cloud adoption process. By following the six stages of the CAF, organizations can create a customized cloud migration strategy that aligns with their specific needs and objectives, ensuring a successful and efficient migration to the cloud.
Silstone Health has helped organizations overcome challenges and successfully adopt cloud migration strategies:
1: Legacy System Migration
Problem: A healthcare organization was struggling with outdated legacy systems that were unable to meet the growing demands of the business. The existing infrastructure was also becoming increasingly expensive to maintain and upgrade, and posed significant risks to the organization’s security and compliance.
Solution: Silstone Health conducted a comprehensive assessment of the organization’s IT infrastructure, and proposed a cloud migration strategy that involved moving the legacy systems to the cloud. We designed a new cloud-based infrastructure that was scalable, flexible, and secure, and that allowed for easy integration with other healthcare applications. We also implemented advanced security measures and compliance protocols to ensure that the organization’s data remained secure and compliant at all times.
Result: The migration to the cloud allowed the healthcare organization to reduce their IT costs by over 30%, while also improving their operational efficiency and enhancing the overall user experience. The new cloud-based infrastructure also allowed the organization to easily scale their operations to meet the growing demands of the business, while ensuring that they remained compliant with industry regulations.
2: Data Management and Analytics
Problem: A healthcare research organization was struggling to manage and analyze the vast amounts of data generated by their research projects. They were using traditional on-premises infrastructure that was unable to handle the large volumes of data, resulting in slow data processing times and data silos that hindered collaboration and data sharing.
Solution: Silstone Health proposed a cloud-based data management and analytics solution that allowed the organization to securely store, process, and analyze their research data in real-time. We implemented advanced data management tools and analytics platforms that enabled the organization to easily access and share their data across various research projects. We also provided customized dashboards and reports that allowed the organization to monitor their research projects in real-time and gain valuable insights into their data.
Result: The cloud-based data management and analytics solution provided by Silstone Health allowed the healthcare research organization to improve their research outcomes and increase their research productivity. The new solution also helped the organization reduce their IT costs by over 25%, while also improving their data security and compliance.
3: Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity
Problem: A healthcare provider was concerned about their ability to recover from a disaster or system failure. They were using traditional on-premises infrastructure that was vulnerable to natural disasters and other disruptions, and that posed significant risks to their data security and compliance.
Solution: Silstone Health proposed a cloud-based disaster recovery and business continuity solution that allowed the healthcare provider to quickly recover from any disaster or system failure. We designed a new cloud-based infrastructure that was highly available and resilient, and that allowed the healthcare provider to easily replicate their data and applications to a secondary site. We also implemented advanced security and compliance protocols to ensure that the healthcare provider’s data remained secure and compliant at all times.
Result: The cloud-based disaster recovery and business continuity solution provided by Silstone Health allowed the healthcare provider to improve their data protection and reduce their risk of downtime. The new solution also helped the healthcare provider reduce their IT costs by over 20%, while also enhancing their overall operational efficiency and improving the patient experience.