The healthcare IT regime: lose the wait, gain the opportunity


Just as good diet and exercise strengthen the body in the short and long term, IT managers know that strategic investments in technology will help healthcare organizations improve care and the patient experience today, all the while. by laying the foundations for optimized operations, reduced costs and improved efficiency. tomorrow.

So many exciting advancements on the horizon – breakthroughs such as three-dimensional printed organs and AI-based cancer treatments – will require high-speed networking technologies for communications and cybersecurity deployments. to protect patient information.

These same network and security technologies deliver value today. In the face of change, constant challenges due to staff shortages and regulatory changes, budget adjustments and changing community requirements, you can steer your organization towards new or increased revenue opportunities, greater patient satisfaction and employees, as well as increased agility and flexibility.

Looking up

Fruits and vegetables are part of good nutrition. Many technologists see cloud computing and the convergence of networking and network security functions as the basic infrastructure to solve today’s challenges and create tomorrow’s opportunities.

Healthcare sector investment in cloud computing will reach more than $ 66.6 billion in 2030, up from $ 26.5 billion in 2020. Drivers include the continued and growing adoption of the technology across the board. industry, the growth of the Medical Internet of Things (IoMT) and Internet of Things. (IoT) and wider broadband availability, which helps patients and offsite healthcare professionals access healthcare data remotely.

When Hospital Sisters Health System moved to a cloud-based infrastructure, it avoided nearly 700 hours of downtime in clinics through automatic failover of new technology, which seamlessly failed over to a backup ISP, a said Benjamin Story, network engineer at HSHS. One of the results was improved relationships between healthcare professionals and patients, as doctors and staff were no longer worried or stressed by near constant service losses, he said.

Safety first

Health leaders, especially within IT, are still concerned about cybersecurity, however. With many companies across industries embracing a hybrid workforce, the steadily rise in attacks on healthcare, the high cost (both health and financial) and the amount of personal information. available in medical records, safety is probably high on your list of concerns. – and it’s probably something that never seems to get enough funding or mind sharing.

There are steps you can take, like embracing zero trust and eliminating manual processes like software updates, which are error-prone and time-consuming, reported. In addition, history shows that many attacks occur in unpatched applications or operating systems.

Wading through data

Information on everything from patients and medications to network performance and parking bottlenecks helps inform, guide and improve, but only if the right people get the correct and actionable information. It can be difficult, especially when it seems all is connected to Wi-Fi or Bluetooth® these days.

Global sales of wearable health device units alone are expected to reach nearly $ 93.5 billion by 2030; that’s a compound annual growth rate of 22.2% between 2020 and 2030. An aging population, more people with chronic diseases, a desire to age in place and new devices will propel the market and your mandate to integrate disparate devices in corporate networks and the patient experience. Clinicians need to analyze information from these watches, rings, and other wearable devices without needing to see every data point. Patients may wish to view each day’s highs and lows or medical achievements, goals, and details. Without a doubt, you and your team will give data the shape that users want.

You will have a lot to work on. By 2022, there will be 4.8 zettabytes of IP traffic per year, triple the rate of 2017, Cisco predicts. Securing and analyzing data in all its forms, then sharing and storing it to improve patient and employee satisfaction and provider success depends on automated analytics. Manual processes are inadequate for such high volumes.

The results speak for themselves: continuous, real-time monitoring of health conditions alerts medical staff to abnormalities, offering better care than a one-time assessment in a doctor’s office. Patients find home diagnostics and monitoring more convenient and less stressful, with some getting more accurate results.

Space saver

Healthcare offices can use the same cloud-based infrastructure for cameras and smart sensors to add intelligence to any room, hallway or parking lot.

In hospitals or medical campuses, these devices can help guide patients to appointments or visiting areas, and heat maps help facilities manage staff in stores, cafeterias, clinics, and others. active. They also help ensure patients arrive on time for lab work and other appointments and improve the patient experience by connecting to portable medical devices to provide real-time monitoring and care. during patient visits.

Sensors and wearable devices also support high-density IoMT, while connected medical devices and wearable devices enable optimization of workflow and actionable insights such as resource allocation. It also optimizes device usage and improves device maintenance plans. These technologies also allow staff to quickly locate important or expensive tools, medical equipment, or colleagues, based on employee badges, and they help cut down on expensive equipment (or maybe even someone’s lunch. a).

Sensors can send alerts when environmental anomalies occur, such as temperature rises / falls or changes in air quality, or humidity thresholds. These alerts protect drugs, equipment and other high-value assets before basic changes cause irreparable damage to them.

Within the network, you can receive alerts if Wi-Fi issues arise, preventing or reducing downtime and minimizing the impact on the patient and employee experience.

Nutritious and delicious

Technology may have once been seen as a side dish, a tool that has done little to improve the healthcare profession beyond administration and finance. Today, however, a healthcare organization without IT would be like a restaurant without pepper.

As healthcare organizations advance their digital transformations, you can leverage patient-centric technology investments for time and money savings and new innovations. With these cloud-based technologies, you can create safe spaces that protect, inform, and delight.

Start your healthcare IT journey today with Cisco Meraki.

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