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Half of Orgs Unprepared for HIT Infrastructure Digitization

Survey finds that half of organizations are currently unprepared for HIT infrastructure digital transformations for mobile and IoT devices.

Healthcare organizations are unprepared for HIT Infrastructure digital upgrades.

Source: Thinkstock

By Elizabeth O'Dowd

- Over half of healthcare and life sciences organizations are planning major health IT infrastructure changes in the near future, but a survey found that most are currently unprepared to begin the transformation.

A recent TayganPoint Consulting Group survey discovered that many healthcare and life sciences organizations are facing the cost and pricing challenges associated with IT infrastructure upgrades. Entities need to do more with decreasing budgets, which challenges IT decision-makers to be more innovative and creative with solution implementation.

The promise of digital tools for a more efficient future infrastructure has prompted healthcare organizations to want to upgrade their current IT solutions. However, legacy solutions – such as wireless networks and data storage – need to be upgraded as well to support new, more technologically advanced solutions.

“Transformation means thinking and behaving in a new way -- and through a series of changes, not just through a singular event,” TayganPoint CEO and Co-Founder Joy Taylor said in a statement. “For companies seeking transformation, strong execution is required – as well as a commitment to aligned strategy, vision, programs, and projects, all working in unison to create new value.”

Survey respondents identified technology investments as one of the top transformation initiatives for their organization. Entities are looking to centralize data collection, storage, and sharing to better leverage big data and have more control over data governance.

Organizations also expressed interest in leveraging cloud-based storage for its functionality.

“There is a real concern for organizations that they won’t succeed if they have not effectively prepared or do not have the internal capabilities to execute on transformational change,” TayganPoint President and Co-Founder John Cassimatis said in a statement.

The survey also indicated that the furthering integration of Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile health has transformed healthcare tools. Patients and clinicians have grown to expect healthcare networks to accommodate connected medical and IoT devices, prompting organizations to consider a digital transformation to meet the demand.

Healthcare mobile strategies are among the fastest growing healthcare technology due to the digitization of health IT infrastructure. Infrastructure digitization and mobile healthcare grow together as organizations look to offer patients and clinicians better and more efficient ways to interact with data.

Late last year, Red Hat found in a survey that 83 percent of healthcare organizations have implemented a mobile strategy. Red hat interviewed over 200 IT decision-makers from public healthcare, private healthcare, life sciences, and pharmaceutical organizations. 

Additionally, 78 percent of those surveyed said they received a positive ROI from mobile applications.

Earlier this year, The Mercom Capital Group released its annual funding and mergers and acquisition activity report for health IT and digital health for 2016. The results showed a massive demand for mobile solutions and IoT solutions.

The report found that the most significant difference in change in invested technologies in 2016 over 2015 was mobile health IT initiatives, with mobile health and telehealth both nearly doubling in funding over last year.

The mobile health trend continued through the top funded health IT technologies in 2016, with healthcare mobile apps dominating with $1.29 billion in funding. Wearable sensors were a distant second with nearly $6 million. Telemedicine, mobile wireless, and remote monitoring also made the top 10 funded health IT technologies with $5.3 million, $2.3 million, and $1.3 million, respectively.

Organizations implementing mobile health solutions need to test their current infrastructure before introducing more devices to the network. Legacy networks cannot handle the increase in traffic patient and clinician mobile devices bring.

Entities are also faced with managing  mobile devices to ensure the data these devices are accessing is secure and the devices can’t be easily hijacked by hackers.

Upgrading a health IT infrastructure takes years of planning and assessment to fully complete a digital transformation.