Storing, organizing, securing, and accessing data via cloud computing is a growing trend within the healthcare industry, and for good reason. Early indicators suggest that compared to local hardware and storage systems, cloud computing allows for improved access and interdisciplinary communication without sacrificing on privacy, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness.
How might cloud computing look at your organization? Check out a few simple ways other clinical institutions are taking advantage of the network-based system to help you imagine your own facility in the cloud.
3 Ways Healthcare Organizations Use Cloud Computing
Telemedicine has been around for decades, but it's exploded in popularity recently as both technology expands and demand increases (especially in light of the social distancing efforts launched in the fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic). Telemedicine is a broad term, but it includes things like:
- Secure patient portals, where patients can access their medical information, including lab tests and imaging results, and communicate with their medical team
- eVisits, which allow patients to remotely and virtually visit with their providers using HIPAA-compliant internet, phone, and video-conferencing devices (even from the comfort of their own homes)
- Provider access to departmental schedules and electronic medical records regardless of physical and temporal constraints (essential for streamlining multidisciplinary care and specialist referrals, which can boost patient care)
Cloud computing is an excellent system for encouraging and supporting the use of telemedicine since it can handle a high amount of data without the need for costly and cumbersome onsite equipment and storage.
Safeguarding Against Cybersecurity Breaches
Transitioning to a cloud-based computing system doesn't completely mitigate the risk of cybersecurity and data breaches; sadly, no organization can ever have 100-percent protection. But with appropriate proactive measures, clinical healthcare organizations can enhance their sensitive data's protection.
Examples of cloud-compliant security features include keycode- or badge-release on printers and computers, data encryption, redundancy, and real-time alerts for personnel regarding potential breaches. And since cloud computing is efficient, downtime for upgrades and back-ups can be minimized, further reducing vulnerability and error.
Supporting Caregiver and Employee Education and Training
Continuing education and ongoing training for employees and staff members is a major component of telemedicine, patient care, and data security, and is required for industry compliance within multiple fields and disciplines. Understandably, training modules can include massive amounts of data which must be accessed by a large number of people. Cloud computing supports education and training—as well as the advent of artificial intelligence—and makes it easy for clinical healthcare organizations to track and update employee transcripts.
As more and more hospitals and other clinical healthcare settings embrace cloud computing, we'll likely continue to see more sophisticated iterations and updates to data storage and security systems. Such network-based operations help organizations move away from the limitations of on-site hardware and storage and increase accessibility and safety for their community.
Of course, knowing how to negotiate these updates and expanded features can feel overwhelming, especially when industry regulations and laws must be maintained. That's one reason why having an experienced team of IT professionals to help you manage, monitor, and modify your clinical healthcare facility's data is essential for maximizing your security, efficiency, and quality of care.
Is Your Clinical Setting Ready to Transition to Cloud Computing?
Managing your clinical healthcare organization's data is a big job, and an important one—but that doesn't mean it has to be complicated, overly costly, and ill-suited to your facility's needs.
Contact Integrity Technology Solutions at 309-664-8150 to schedule a consultation with one of our support staff. We're here to help you envision your organization on the cloud!