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Healthcare looks to augment IT service delivery

The evolving healthcare industry is forcing decision-makers to embrace new operational methods, as traditional practices cannot keep up with today's fast-paced needs. Numerous administrations are adopting cloud computing technologies in an effort to improve connectivity to mission-critical resources without compromising their availability or the facility's bottom line.

A recent survey of more than 100 College of Healthcare Information Management Executives by MeriTalk revealed that 90 percent of respondents believe innovation is the key to their future and many decision-makers will use public and private cloud services to get there. The majority of healthcare managers believe that 47 percent of the tools they currently use can be delivered through an IT as a Service model.

"Healthcare reform is forcing new efficiencies," said Steve O'Keeffe, founder of MeriTalk. "ITaaS results to date show enormous potential. This is a crucial step if we want to revitalize our U.S. healthcare system."

By delivering IT applications, resources and other services through a cloud delivery model, healthcare organizations can speed up operations, reduce costs and use technologies that open up new doors for future innovative strategies.

Embracing a new healthcare system
The survey found that healthcare executives are looking for more agile service delivery capabilities that will enable employees to perform more efficiently and allow administrations to transform their objectives. The study also revealed that firms are embracing multiple cloud strategies to achieve these goals, as 87 percent of respondents are using Software as a Service, while 17 percent are using Infrastructure as a Service.

"An ITaaS framework enables providers to support the pace of change and organizational transformation to meet accountable care goals," said David Dimond, healthcare solutions chief strategist at EMC.

An RnR Market Research report highlighted the changing healthcare IT market, noting that it is forecast to expand at a compound annual growth rate of more than 7 percent between 2012 and 2017, increasing from $21.9 billion to $31.3 billion. These ongoing investments in technology suggest that the healthcare sector will continue to innovate and keep up with ongoing technological transformations.

In the past, the healthcare industry was often thought to be archaic, as many decision-makers believed embracing new IT services would only make it more difficult to keep sensitive information safe and available. More recently, executives have begun to realize that adopting the cloud and other solutions is vital to their future.

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