Healthcare is in big demand, and because of this, many healthcare providers are under pressure to grow and scale quickly. The cloud can help. But what exactly do we mean by the cloud?
What Is the Cloud?
The “cloud” is a general term that really applies to any sort of software or storage solution that relies on the Internet to connect local computers to offsite solutions. If it’s on the Internet, it’s probably in the cloud. However, we are oversimplifying here to a certain extent.
The Internet didn’t always have cloud services. What sets cloud services apart from the old-school Internet is this: Traditionally, websites ran on a single Internet server, which is basically a connected computer designed to handle Internet traffic. But as traffic needs grew, additional servers needed to be added to handle the load. Adding on new servers like this was unwieldy, so someone came up with the idea to create the “cloud,” which is an expandable network of servers that can grow and expand to meet the needs of a variety of web-based applications.
The main point you need to understand here is this: The cloud is designed to be expandable and flexible.
Since then, the cloud has expanded to encompass almost every aspect of business technology. Specifically, cloud services can range from everything such as cloud data storage to cloud software solutions to cloud phone systems. SaaS, software as a service, is a fancy way of saying software that’s available via the cloud.
Cloud services can help healthcare providers by providing scalable computing services that can grow quickly while being extremely flexible and customizable.
Yes, the cloud does require Internet access to work properly. However, it is far safer to maintain important files and data on a cloud server than locally, because if something happens to your local office, or a local machine, files could be lost forever. This is just one benefit of the cloud for healthcare.
Let’s look at three ways healthcare organizations can utilize the cloud.
Cloud Data Storage for Healthcare
Healthcare organizations, hospitals, and doctors’ offices generally need to keep a lot of records. Now that most records have been transitioned to electronic medical records, The challenge is on securely storing these records and keeping up with growing storage needs. Cloud data storage can store, manage, and maintain electronic medical records securely and safely.
The cloud can grow as you grow. Your cloud data storage isn’t just limited to one Internet connected server computer. Cloud data storage is designed to be encrypted and distributed through a scalable infrastructure. If you need more storage, it just needs to be requested, and it will be ready in a jiffy.
So as your healthcare organization or office expands, your cloud storage can easily expand without much in additional costs. Furthermore, cloud data storage is essential for disaster recovery. All files and records are electronically encrypted and backed up online in multiple secure locations. This means that if your physical office is somehow damaged in a natural disaster or fire or other event, your electronic medical records will be safe.
Document Management Solutions
A document management solution takes the idea of cloud data storage and then improves it with an organizational structure and collaborative software to make it easy for your team members to quickly search and access the files that they need. Collaboration is enabled through document sharing and revision tracking. Documents are much more securely worked on by teams in this way, because staff members won’t need to rely on insecure email to trade documents back and forth.
Document management systems can potentially integrate with other apps and IT solutions to create a fully integrated environment that can boost productivity. And while much of healthcare needs to be done in person, for those healthcare organizations that do have remote workers, such as billing and coding personnel, document management solutions can be essential in providing these off-site workers a way to securely access all of the files and information they need to do their jobs.
Cloud Phone Systems and Soft Phones
The cloud isn’t just a place for documents and files. The cloud is also a way that you can manage your communications. Healthcare organizations generally field a lot of phone calls. Landline phones are expensive. They also aren’t very flexible. But with a soft phone system based in the cloud, your hospital, dental office, or medical center can handle a large volume of calls without having to worry about adding more physical infrastructure.
Cloud soft phone technology can integrate with online communications, such as webchat, WhatsApp messaging, video conferencing, and SMS. An integrated back end will enable your healthcare organization to manage all of these communications centrally, and keep track of patient calls and incoming inquiries.
Want to Move Your Healthcare Organization to the Cloud?
CDS Office Technologies can help your healthcare organization grow and thrive with our specialized cloud computing and phone services. Whether you need cloud data storage, document management solutions, or cloud phone systems, we can get you established in the cloud. Our experienced technical consultants will assess your organization’s needs and pain points to develop a custom solution that leverages the best of cloud technologies.
CDS Office Technologies can help your healthcare organization grow and scale with customized cloud services. Contact us today to schedule a comprehensive assessment and personalized consultation.