In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, numerous industries have rapidly adopted cloud technology, with its benefits being particularly vital for the healthcare sector.
The healthcare industry’s adoption of cloud computing is set to soar, with its market expected to grow from an estimated $26.8 billion in 2023 to a staggering $76.8 billion by 2026.
Undoubtedly, cloud computing posseses the potential to transform the healthcare industry, yet there are several obstacles that must be tackled. Thus, it is crucial to contemplate the benefits of integrating cloud computing into the medical field and to investigate the measures that can be taken to overcome any potential obstacles.
Illustrations and Benefits of Cloud Computing in Healthcare
Adoption of cloud computing gets rid of the necessity to purchase expensive servers, software licenses and setup fees. This is great news for the healthcare sector, which deals with a huge amount of data that has to be stored, modified and accessed regularly, resulting in significant cost savings.
Furthermore, companies are charged solely for the services they employ, instead of paying for a bundle of features that may not be utilized.
With an internet connection at your disposal, you can access any files or applications stored in the cloud at any time. This provides easy access to cloud-based resources necessary to retrieve patient data, work together on files, or carry out other duties that require data access.
Sharing patient records between healthcare establishments (e.g., hospitals and laboratories) was a challenging process before the inception of cloud computing, and it usually involved conventional faxing or postal services. Medical professionals had no easy way to access this vital information when needed to deliver top-notch patient care.
With cloud computing, sharing and transferring patient electronic health records (EHRs) and other important data has become much swifter. Thanks to digital technologies, doctors can now access and share patient information swiftly and easily when required, for instance, when a patient seeks to switch doctors or wants to disclose their medical history to other healthcare professionals.
Cloud computing systems provide an added benefit in that they need the least maintenance, especially when compared to traditionally installed applications. This can be advantageous for healthcare teams, as vendors of these solutions normally offer automatic updates, saving time and effort.
Dissemination of Data and Analytical Tools
Data and analytics are essential to the healthcare industry, and cloud computing provides various possible benefits. Utilizing this data can result in more informed and strategic decision-making about patients, organizations and healthcare schemes.
Reinstating Patient Access to Medical Records
Gaining access to patient records before the inception of cloud computing was an often futile and time-consuming process. However, cloud computing has facilitated simplified access to patient health data, giving them more control over their healthcare.
Cloud computing offers patients a chance to take charge of their healthcare by allowing them to access their medical records, interact directly with their healthcare providers, and manage their appointments and medications. This empowers individuals to become more involved in their health and wellbeing.
Cloud-hosted platforms provide healthcare professionals with the advantage of scalability, making them adjustable in terms of both their operational capabilities and pricing structures. Depending on the vendor’s pricing policies, users can modify their usage or expenses as needed. This is highly beneficial for healthcare professionals dealing with large amounts of data and frequently encountering storage issues.
Enhancements in Telemedicine
Telemedicine has been around for some time, but its usage has risen considerably since the start of the pandemic. Cloud-based platforms like Doxy.me and Updox allow doctors and patients to interact digitally instead of requiring an in-person consultation. These services are HIPAA compliant, making them a must-have in the medical industry.
As healthcare professionals, we bear a great responsibility for safeguarding patient data. With cybercrime and data breaches on the upswing, there is mounting apprehension about whether cloud computing can ensure secure data storage.
It is crucial to take all necessary safeguards when transferring data storage and processing to the cloud, as cyberattacks can happen in any type of storage device. Implementing such measures will guarantee the security of your data and minimize any possible risks.
Lack of Knowledge
Cloud computing platforms demand specific expertise and skills. While this may pose a challenge, it is not an insurmountable obstacle. Healthcare providers and organizations may not possess the internal resources with the necessary specializations, in which case they may need to seek assistance from outsourcing companies to fulfill their responsibilities. Cloud computing services
Cloud systems can be dependable if they are developed with reliability as the priority. However, it’s necessary to be mindful that they may encounter instances of downtime. In the healthcare industry, where reliability is critical, it’s prudent to prepare for any possible interruptions.
The Influence of Cloud Computing on the Healthcare Industry’s Future
When examining the possibilities of cloud technology in healthcare, its advantages are evident. From better accessibility to healthcare data democratization and scalability, healthcare professionals and organizations have widely adopted this approach. Consequently, it’s essential to ponder, “What lies ahead for healthcare and the cloud?”
Recognizing skilled professionals in the cloud industry, tackling security concerns, and other difficulties will continue to be pressing concerns. In order to uncover solutions for the future, more extensive investigation is required. The introduction of experts and cost-effective outsourced cloud computing services has brought us closer to a more secure and dependable cloud environment.
In 2023, a study of healthcare professionals disclosed that 63% of them declared they would definitely or probably use the cloud to accommodate all of their applications. This figure is estimated to grow as organizations comprehend the benefits of storing data on the cloud, and as more remote healthcare services are introduced.