Compared to other economic sectors, the healthcare industry has been slow in terms of adoption of technological advances when it comes to data storage, processing, management, and interconnection of data networks between distinct and distant healthcare facilities, healthcare providers, and other stakeholders of the healthcare industry. Even today, as digitization and networking become an indispensable part of every industry, many healthcare institutions still manage the vast amount of data accumulated in everyday practices on paper records. Moreover, the limited amount of information digitized by a few institutions cannot be easily transmitted across systems.
Also, the healthcare industry has traditionally boasted highly fragmented technology infrastructure and systems. Owing to these factors, and also due to the concern over data security in the healthcare domain, the healthcare industry has shied away from the larger integration of IT solutions, making it difficult for to share a crucial data amongst the different sectors of the healthcare industry.
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Cloud Computing Set to Revolutionize Healthcare Industry
However, numerous healthcare reforms are making it necessary for the healthcare industry to adopt electronic health records and modernize the traditional infrastructure to make it more compliant with digital interventions. The industry is rapidly adapting to this model, with healthcare cloud computing at the core of this transformation.
Analysts claim that cloud computing is at the core of the digital transformation that the healthcare industry is currently undergoing. There has been a huge rise in interest among healthcare companies about the vast benefits of cloud computing and the potential of this networking module in leveraging the efficiency of a number of healthcare processes. Cloud computing is expected to witness a rapid integration in the healthcare industry in the next couple of years.
Current Pace of Adoption Reveal Healthcare Cloud’s Potential
One can gauge the rising scope of cloud in the healthcare industry from the rate at which cloud-based offerings are adopted across a variety of end-users. According to a recent market research report published by Transparency Market Research, the global market for healthcare cloud computing had a valuation of US$1.82 bn in 2011. The market is expected to expand at an exceptional 21.30% CAGR between 2012 and 2018 and reach a valuation of US$6.79 bn by 2018.
Several healthcare practitioners and physicians across all 50 states of the U.S. already use cloud-based electronic health records (EHR). IT giants such as Microsoft, Qualcomm Life, Philips, IBM, ORACLE Corporation, and AT&T have launched highly complex and increasingly sophisticated healthcare cloud solutions spanning a number of healthcare verticals.
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Benefits that Seem to be Tailored for Healthcare Industry
For the effective digitization of the healthcare field, cloud computing is said to be the most suited solution. Here’s why:
• Cloud computing modules enable on-demand access to vast storage capacities and computing applications, which are typically not achievable by conventional computing models.
• Cloud computing systems support the storage and maintenance of large data sets that are typical of electronic health records or medical images.
• Cloud computing modules ease the process of offloading of genomic data records from traditional healthcare data repositories.
• Cloud computing modules enable the easy sharing of electronic health records among healthcare practitioners or hospitals and care delivery centers that are located at geographically distant locations, allowing timely access to data and eliminating the need for retesting.