Healthcare IT leaders on cloud adoption challenges Leave a comment

Despite the much-needed push toward technologies like cloud computing and artificial intelligence (AI), a Presido survey found healthcare IT leaders are still struggling with cloud adoption issues.

Path to cloud slowed by turnover

The push for digital transformation was accelerated by the pandemic, thrusting healthcare IT leaders into the spotlight and forcing them to fast-track their plans over the past few years.

The leading factor for cloud adoption among healthcare IT leaders, however, was help achieving compliance, cited by 52% of healthcare respondents. The desire to become “more agile and support innovation” followed, cited by 46% of the respondents.

Sam Fatigato, vice president of Presidio’s Cloud Solutions Group, said the most surprising stats revealed are that just 21% of healthcare IT leaders say they are proficient in AI/ML and less than a quarter (23%) say their team is currently proficient with DevOps and automation.

He noted the lack of perceived proficiency could stem from the fact that 35% of healthcare IT leaders report staff turnover as a major challenge.

“Finding the right technology partner can help healthcare IT leaders bridge the AI skills gap,” Fatigato said. “Utilizing a technology partner can help in-house IT teams focus on what matters most to organizations, like keeping hospital computer systems running or improving security practices.”

Legacy systems face compliance constraints

Fatigato said that legacy IT systems are holding healthcare organizations back from realizing their cloud potential.

“Many healthcare organizations have siloed systems and data and legacy monolithic electronic health record installations,” he explained.

On-premises systems are seen increasingly as slow, cumbersome, difficult to integrate with other systems, and unable to keep pace with the ease, flow and connectivity of cloud applications.

He said that cloud is also a critical component for achieving and maintaining compliance with new regulations, thanks to standards like ISO 27001 and SAS 70 and guidance from organizations like the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and National Institute of Standards and Technology.

As privacy regulations evolve, Fatigato said that he advises healthcare organizations to be sure that their data systems meet new compliance standards.

Cloud can offer better patient experiences

The industry is looking to leverage the cloud and AI to transform the patient experience, using technologies to improve call-center operations and employee and patient experiences.

For example, New York-based Northwell Health and Google Cloud recently partnered to use cloud technology and AI to automate administrative workflows and identify patient risk factors for early intervention.

Healthcare organizations that had their systems in the cloud during the pandemic were also able to pivot and continue to deliver patient services more easily and with minimal disruption.

“Cloud can help drive innovation and serve as a barrier against potential cyberattacks, as the healthcare sector has experienced a significant increase in attacks over the past two years,” concluded Fatigato.

Nathan Eddy is a healthcare and technology freelancer based in Berlin.
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Twitter: @dropdeaded209



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