Four Ways Cloud Computing Can Save Your Hospital Money

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The ability to save businesses money, and in myriad ways, is one of the prime advantages of the cloud technology.


Every for-profit business wants to make money by the very nature of the definition. And if one gets down to basics, there are two ways to make more money – earn more and spend less. While cloud computing can definitely help businesses like healthcare organizations earn more through improved operations leading to greater customer satisfaction, today we will look at the different ways cloud computing can save money for businesses.


1. One-time Investments as Operational Costs

Firstly, with cloud computing you don’t have to make large upfront investments in your IT infrastructure. Not only are such investments a drag on a business’ bottom line, they depreciate over time. On the cloud, one-time investments are spread across several operational cycles, becoming part of operational costs. As any corporate finance professional will attest, this is a much better alternative. Once you include the time value of money in your ROI calculations, cloud computing seems even more attractive.


2. Effectively Renting IT Assets

Secondly, a business on the cloud can benefit from economies of scale, not through its own purchases but those made by the service provider. These providers can buy IT assets in bulk at lower costs than consumers can do themselves, and part of these cost savings is passed onto them. Thus, businesses end up saving money by not buying IT assets outright but effectively renting them on the cloud.


3. Reduced IT Operational Costs

Thirdly, running a large-scale IT operation as is required by large complex multi-facility hospital organizations is a costly affair in itself. Other than the costs of upgrading hardware and software, businesses have to bear personnel costs like salaries and benefits. If busines operations are on the cloud, all these are the responsibilities of the cloud service provider. Also, and this is especially applicable to businesses located in large metropolitan areas, going on the cloud can save good money in rentals by outsourcing IT assets and personnel away from the premises.


4. Billing on a Per-use/Per-demand Model

Consumption of cloud computing resources is billed on a per-use model, which effectively becomes a per-demand model. Therefore, businesses pay for only what they use, and they use only what they need. With the traditional paradigm, a business has to pay for its existing IT assets, whether they are used or not. Maintenance has to be performed, utility bills have to be paid and salaries have to be disbursed – whether they are contributing to the business revenues or not. Going on the cloud can prevent all this.

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From the Floor at AHIP: It Can’t be Done Without 21st-Century Technology!

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It would be hard to find someone to argue against the idea that healthcare has enormous room for improvement. While other industries became process-focused, automated, analytical, mobile, social and event-enabled, healthcare focused its technology efforts on the latest diagnostic equipment, and on systems that facilitate billing and claim processing, but not on the technology that would make healthcare cheaper or better.

An insurance company that wants to compete in the coming changes, including accountable care, bundled payments, and selling directly to consumers and through Health Insurance Exchanges must come to the table with the technology that enables competition. It will be a wide-open landscape for the payers who make the investment in process, analytics, pricing, cloud, social and mobile.


Process agility

The changes that are coming, regardless of the outcome of the Supreme Court decision, will require development of new processes throughout organizations. Just as the rest of the world moved to business process management systems, payers will need to develop business process governance and deployment capabilities. Death from 1,000 Visios is an avoidable fate with products that manage both manual and automated process. Add business events capabilities to the mix, and organizations have the ability to identify and quantify the impact of events on operational processes, providing easy opportunities for agility.

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Importance of online promotion to doctors rises

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Physicians have become steady online and smartphone users. According to a survey by Manhattan Research, in 2010 physicians spent twice as much time online for professional purposes than in 2008.


They tap into the Internet to research conditions, procedures, medications and industry news.

As a result, online promotion to health care professionals grows in importance, specifically as it relates to helping doctors care for their patients, teach trainees and perform their jobs more efficiently.


As the market adapts to the influence of the Web, health care marketers seek new ways to build trust and relationships with clinicians without traditional face-to-face meetings.


We connect with doctors via social media, instant messaging and even Skype.


We work hard to integrate our offerings into the digital tools and venues that clinicians already trust and use but to utilize these tools for business purposes. As health care marketers, we try to tap into new media without being perceived as unwelcome guests. It is a daily struggle but one I am willing to continue.


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5 Ways to Instantly Connect With Doctors

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5 applications and web platforms that are allowing individuals to call, text and email doctors when they need emergency medical advice.


Discovering a new food allergy or waking up with the shakes is scary. But, being able to call or text doctors at night, on weekends and remotely, changes everything. New mobile health apps are springing up to save the day — connecting doctors on standby with patients who need them the most.


We’ve rounded up five medical apps and websites that connect users directly to doctors. With tele-health apps, patients can call, text or privately message licensed physicians online for immediate help. Patients have an instant connection to knowledgable specialists. This industry won’t replace primary care physicians, but it will come in handy when sudden sickness strikes. Illnesses can be diagnosed and medicine can be prescribed right over the web or phone.


The benefits are immense. Internet-based healthcare makes high-quality care accessible at low cost — even to those without health insurance. Consumers can communicate with doctors on the go, at work or from the privacy of their home.

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How to build a business case for social media for your practice

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Social media like Twitter and Facebook can be used to create a vibrant sense of community between a physican and patients and that sense of community can be translated into a way of increasing demand for a practice or healthcare organization. This is also an outstanding use of social media for marketing.

But – that’s not what I want to talk about.

I want you to consider how private social networking for healthcare can help you improve the data you get from your patients, how it can save you time and how it can improve patient trust by using social networking for secure connectivity.

Let’s discuss private social networking and the benefits for you and for your patients:

Private social networking for healthcare has 4 business requirements:

A private and secure user friendly messaging system which enables the exchange of private messages between doctor and patient without the privacy exposure and time consuming distraction of email and Facebook.

Make it easy to distribute guidance directly and discreetly to the patient and care givers. Guidance may include information such as medications, treatments, tests, follow ups etc.

Make it easy for your patient and caregivers to update you with relevant data on a timeline such as: blood pressure, pulse, dizziness, general feeling, appetite, clarity of speech, movement stability as well as classified events such as falling, nausea, blood pressure drops/peaks, medication taken (what, how much, when, who gave) and treatments performed (what, when, who gave).

Make it easy to identify the differences between what you instructed and what the patient /caregivers actually did. Think of it like balancing your checkbook.

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The Dangers of Too Much Ambition in Health Information Exchange

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What is an over-architected HIE?


Put simply, it’s one that tries to do too much for too many with not enough money and time. It tries to establish an all-encompassing infrastructure and service to meet multiple, heterogeneous current and future requirements of multiple, heterogeneous current and future customers. It tries to do all of this with a shoestring budget and staff. And worst of all, it focuses more on long-term potential “big-bang” value at the expense of short-term, realizable, incremental value. Or as one HIE organization’s promotional material put it, the value proposition is to be a “one-stop shop for Clinical and Administrative Information.”


The counter to the over-architected HIE is the incremental or phased HIE, which focuses specifically and radically on concrete, discrete, value-generating and self-standing steps and does not tie its fortunes to a specific future end-state whose horizon is further than the range of our ability to navigate. I was recently describing my concern to a health care system executive, and he said, “Yes, well, but we just want to jump to the end.” By that he meant, build the final solution infrastructure and services right away to solve the big problem of creating a “one-stop shop,” and assume that by-products of that long-term effort will keep everyone motivated along the way. My concern reached new heights after that conversation.

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Social Media Promoting Health

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Promotion of personal fitness, nutrition and general well-beingthrough social media is an emerging approach to prevent and manage chronic diseases. These new social media sites engage and educate patients in personal health care, connect patients with their peers, implement evidence-based interventions, and change behavior over time. For some, their goal is to give simple daily challenges or “micro-actions” that add up to significant health improvements over time, all the while earning points and developinrelationships with others on a similar pursuit. In some cases, points can be exchanged for discounts and rewards


Many of these technologies leverage existing social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter and can be accessed on different internet-connected devices such as personal computers, smartphones or mobile phones. There are many social media sites that promote health in some way. A snapshot of sites on the market today includes MeYou Health, DailyFeats, BodiMojo and Zamzee.

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