Effective health management is a massive challenge the world faces today.
Healthcare organizations are striving to innovate and embrace new business, service, and risk models to cope with the constant strain on global healthcare systems due to a combination of factors.
Organizations that serve larger employee populations are turning to healthcare solution providers for help in achieving their objective of offering more affordable — yet high-quality — healthcare solutions. At the same time, the exponential advances in medical and digital technology that are enabling this require security, scalability, and flexibility to be truly effective. And this is where a move to the cloud can be beneficial for organizations.
Security and compliance
The technologies in use today depend on big data analytics, patient engagement, and healthcare information. On one hand, these offer multiple benefits, helping healthcare delivery become more accessible, personalized, and efficient. On the flip side, however, these are the very aspects that can increase risk.
Patient data is sensitive and valuable, and data privacy violations can potentially have serious consequences for the healthcare provider. In addition, Internet of Things (IoT)-connected medical devices can be vulnerable to hacker attacks because they may lack defense mechanisms and capabilities. The cloud can offer better security for data storage than on-premises systems.
Flexibility and scalability
With the large, ever-increasing volumes of data that healthcare organizations handle and process, the cloud is an option that is both flexible and scalable. As business and regulatory requirements continue to evolve, the flexibility to move and manage workloads across multiple clouds is a huge advantage, as is the ability to increase the speed and flexibility of developing new services. Cloud can provide elasticity, helping to enable users to scale capacity and features up or down according to the needs of their business. They can also use the cloud provider’s global network to move their applications closer to users.
Storing data in the cloud offers healthcare providers the dual advantage of ease of access and streamlined management of the data. The ability to share data with stakeholders, to invite opinions and diagnoses from medical specialists across the globe, and to decide treatment protocols is invaluable.
Having data in the cloud can also help facilitate a smooth transition between consultation, treatment, insurance, and payments. Other advantages of cloud computing can include improved access to healthcare through telehealth services and management of post-hospitalization care.
Deloitte and IBM’s hybrid cloud ecosystem
In early August, Deloitte — a professional services provider — chose IBM Cloud to host its Population Health Management (PHM) solution in Brazil. This migration has helped Deloitte Brazil scale its solution, meeting demand forecasts for its clients. The move to IBM Cloud also gave Deloitte access to IBM Security’s protection and security for enterprise applications and workloads.
IBM believes that ecosystems are crucial to unlocking the full benefits of the cloud, especially for companies in highly regulated industries like healthcare. Clients can benefit when they have an ecosystem of partners working together to give them the platforms, products, and services to help meet their needs. Partners can benefit from a variety of potential co-creation opportunities, selling networks, and other support.
Deloitte is part of the IBM hybrid cloud ecosystem, a new initiative designed to support Global System Integrators (GSIs) and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) to help organizations modernize and transform mission-critical workloads with Red Hat OpenShift for any cloud environment, including the IBM public cloud. The IBM public cloud offers the industry’s most open and secure public cloud for business.
The ideal future for global healthcare is one where there are systems in place that can proactively help people strive to maintain wellness, with access to personalized care when they need it. A goal of IBM Cloud is to build solutions that may help healthcare organizations make advances toward achieving these objectives.