Most Doctors and Nurses Believe Telehealth to Dominate Patient Care in the Future
Survey comissioned by HPE reveals how the healthcare industry is going through a rapid transformation, with a profound impact on the technologies and solutions required to meet the demands of modern, scalable healthcare delivery. These findings are presented in HPE’s first multi-country “Future of Healthcare” Report which surveyed healthcare clinicians and IT Decision Makers (ITDMs) in the United States and United Kingdom.
Market research firm Vanson Bourne conducted the survey to explore respondents’ perceptions on how the pandemic has impacted technology in their healthcare organization, opportunities and challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, AI, edge technologies, hybrid cloud, machine learning, and telehealth. The findings point to an increased focus and investment in solutions that can help healthcare organizations future-proof their edge-to-cloud IT environments and ensure agility and flexibility in the ways they deliver quality patient care at scale, regardless of where the providers and patients may be located.
“The healthcare industry has undergone tremendous change over the last 18 months, enabling providers to connect with their patients securely and effectively wherever they are, with virtual care at the forefront,” said Steve Cotham, Healthcare Chief Technologist at HPE. “In this new paradigm of modern healthcare, however, organizations face compounding pressures to quickly adapt while still making progress toward long-term business, data management, and patient care objectives. As a result, they are seeking out agile, scalable, secure, and cost-effective platforms that serve their entire edge-to-cloud environment, while still meeting the requirements of an increasing regulatory healthcare landscape.”
According to Gartner, the number of telehealth visits increased by 154% in the last week of March 2020 compared to the same timeline in 2019. The sudden shift to accelerate digital transformation saw healthcare providers change focus to innovation and modernization, and prioritizing the cloud experience in their investments. Data from HPE’s Future of Healthcare Survey shows 84% of ITDMs agree the pandemic has accelerated their organization's digital transformation. An additional 89% agree the pandemic has made investing in new technologies a priority for their organization.
With the rapid growth of edge technologies, edge computing is being used to monitor patients remotely, automate the delivery of care, leverage AI to improve the speed and accuracy of diagnoses, and more. The COVID-19 pandemic sparked a huge increase in telehealth adoption, enabling healthcare organizations to continue to provide patient care outside of traditional healthcare settings. Still, 68% of clinicians agreed they frequently have issues in delivering telehealth to patients due to lack of access to the right technology or networks, highlighting the challenges that remain as the digital divide prevents widespread access to wi-fi connectivity and technology around the world.
Demonstrating the increased value of breakthrough edge technologies in the past year, more than three-fourths (82%) of ITDMs believe connected medical devices are one of the technologies that will have the biggest impact on their organization in the next five years. A further 55% say remote working has become more important to their organization’s IT department in the last 12 months. This demonstrates the importance of a fast, efficient edge network where the delivery of quality patient care remains the top priority.
Today’s healthcare organizations operate in an edge-to-cloud world. Many have determined their applications and workloads must remain on-premises or at the edge due to cost, compliance, control, latency, security, and compliance considerations. For example, 72% of ITDMs cited IT security as the primary concern when moving all of their organization’s data to the public cloud, and 58% cited data egress costs, the charges associated with moving data out of the cloud, as one of the most essential factors in deciding where to store data. As a result, almost two-thirds (61%) of ITDMs say they are pursuing a hybrid cloud strategy.
As ITDMs look to optimize their edge-to-cloud IT environment to improve performance and efficiency, 48% said adopting new and emerging IT cloud platforms was one of the most significant drivers when investing in IT infrastructure. Regardless of where they store their data, ITDMs are seeking out the cloud experience with a majority (55%) surveyed pointing to “self-service IT” as one of the top features for their IT environment in terms of having on-demand access to IT services, applications, and scale.