HITInfrastructure

Virtualization News

Cloud-Based Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Growing in Health IT

Workspot’s recent virtual desktop infrastructure solution shows why cloud- based VDI can be beneficial to healthcare organizations.

virtual desktop infrastructure moves to cloud-based environment.

Source: Thinkstock

- Workspot announced the availability of its virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solution through the Microsoft Azure Marketplace.

The cloud-native VDI solution deploys Windows 10 virtual desktops, Windows apps, and GPU workstations on Azure. Organizations implementing the tools are charged with a flat monthly subscription fee.

Workspot VDI provides users with a virtual desktop as a service via Microsoft Azure instead of an on-premises managed deployment. This provides organizations with the opportunity to utilize VDI without expending on-premises resources to maintain the virtualized environment.

Organizations choosing to deploy Workspot on-premises also have the option to move workloads to Azure if needed to balance their hybrid infrastructure. The tool provides users with a single management console across multiple on-premises data centers and Azure locations.

"Organizations need simplified VDI deployment solutions that drive workplace efficiency and favorable economics,” Enterprise Strategy Group Senior Analyst Mark Bowker said in a statement. “These solutions must meet operational demands and the unique challenges many businesses face.”

“At the same time, they must empower enterprises and IT departments to manage workloads on-premises as well as through hybrid cloud data center architectures,” Bowker continued. “With the continued growth of VDI and the shift to hybrid solutions, end-users are beginning to demand both secure desktop and application delivery in a timely and cost-efficient manner."

Azure users deploying Workspot can experience simplified VDI management through the cloud-native service, reduced operating expenses, and a scalable virtual desktop environment.

Workspot is currently implemented in healthcare organizations to deliver applications to doctors in regional clinics by publishing the apps on Azure.

Vendors are also taking the cloud-based approach to digital workspaces. Earlier this year Avanade announced its cloud-first approach to digital workspaces in partnership with Citrix.

The initiative uses Avanade’s assets and tools from its transformation and managed services to integrate Citrix desktop and application virtualization products with Microsoft Azure and Windows 10. Avanade’s clients provide end-users with flexible and scalable virtualized desktop that can be accessed quickly and easily via an organization’s network.

Avanade and Citrix encourage their mutual clients to embrace a cloud first approach for their desktop virtualization environments for better security and flexibility.

Leveraging cloud for virtual desktop environments allows organizations to distribute workloads more evenly without investing in expensive hardware to scale up.

VDI is growing in healthcare as a way for organizations to give clinicians a more flexible, scalable, and secure workspace environment to improve patient treatment at the point of care.

Clinicians constantly move among exam rooms and often spend a significant amount of time logging into and out of applications and secure desktops. Many healthcare organizations are examining their health IT infrastructures to see where expenses and time can be saved.

As entities move toward value-based care models, consolidating technology to save infrastructure resources and give clinicians more time to interact with their patients leads them to VDI.

VDI uses abstraction to remote desktop operating systems to mobile devices. VDI separates the desktop environment and application layer from a user’s endpoint device. Users access their personal desktop via any thin client device on the network without having to go through a long login process.

Southern New Hampshire Health currently deploys wheeled virtual desktops for its clinicians. Clinicians are able to use the same desktop throughout their shift and the VDI solution allows them to login it all their digital tools and applications by tapping their badges.

Southern New Hampshire Health’s VDI environment is also more secure because it eliminates the need for employees to constantly change and remember complex passwords. It’s common for employees to write down passwords which makes it difficult for IT to fully secure an environment.

Healthcare organizations are looking to cut costs while providing more advanced tools for clinicians. Leveraging the cloud along with virtualizing desktops consolidates infrastructure resources while providing more convenient tools for clinicians.