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RYeldell

Regan Yeldell

Director, Vertical Marketing of Comcast Business

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6 Priorities for Healthcare CIOs

May 15, 2015

Every industry has its own trends that IT executives must face. But few have to accommodate the sheer number of complex issues as the healthcare industry.

Every industry has its own trends that IT executives must face. But few have to accommodate the sheer number of complex issues as the healthcare industry.

Here is a list of 6 key priorities that are top of mind for healthcare CIOs in 2015.

  1. Meaningful Use
  2.  

    Many hospitals are still struggling with government mandates to use certified electronic health records. Hospitals require increased bandwidth capacity to convert patient health records to digital records, and share those records electronically to multiple people and organizations. The sheer size and volume of healthcare data files place stress on the network, especially when large files need to be transmitted within the hospital and across the healthcare ecosystem.

  3. BYOD and Mobility
  4.  

    The use of mobile technology in healthcare is rapidly growing and is being used across the entire spectrum of the delivery system to help clinical teams deliver care and help patients better engage in their own care. Some organizations are beginning to allow clinicians to bring their own devices (BYOD) to enhance productivity and save money on device distribution and maintenance. Many organizations find that their existing technology infrastructures aren’t optimized for handling and storing the vast amounts of data being generated from multiple applications and mobile devices.

  5. Security
  6.  

    The security of patient data stored on-premise is always a concern, but as healthcare organizations and individual clinicians increase their use of mobile technologies and cloud applications and continue to expand their BYOD policies, the likelihood of a large-scale security breach is compounded. In addition, healthcare organizations must comply with HIPPA to maintain protected health information and PCI DSS, a set of Data Security Standards set forth by the Payment Card Industry to protect patient payments made with credit and debit cards.

  7. Network Scalability
  8.  

    As healthcare IT continues to advance, and systems like EHRs and PACS imaging handle more and more data, bandwidth demands on the network will increase exponentially. In addition to advances in technology, the past decade has seen providers aligning with health networks and those networks consolidating to realize economies of scale. This evolution further challenges IT professionals in terms of coordinating infrastructure across multiple locations. Healthcare CIOs should ensure that their data networks can easily scale to accommodate the need for more capacity.

  9. Telemedicine
  10.  

    Faced with ongoing shortages of specialists and greatly increased patient caseloads, healthcare providers are challenged to meet growing service demands without jeopardizing patient safety. Telemedicine applications allow medical personnel to use HD video technology and data sharing networks to conduct remote consultations and clinical assessments—helping healthcare providers extend coverage while making better use of limited medical staff resources. However, many hospitals rely on aging legacy networks that lack the capacity and performance to deliver premium-quality HD video streams and the reliability to support life-critical applications. High-capacity fiber optic networks help overcome these limitations.

  11. Patient Engagement
  12.  

    Patient engagement is driven by technology ranging from patient portals, which enable patients to view test results online and communicate with doctors, to electronic data capturing platforms and consumer wearables that result in more accurate and streamlined diagnostic information. Robust data connections are required as more patients sign-up to review and download medical results, treatment plans and prescription history.

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