Although the healthcare industry was initially slow to move its data and services to the cloud, more than 40% of healthcare companies and providers reported that they are using the cloud in 2016. The move to the cloud is due to enhanced security, cost-effectiveness, and the increased availability of services that enhance efficiency and patient safety.
Patient registries are maintained by healthcare providers for many reasons, including follow-up and tracking of procedures. Because patient registries include confidential information such as the patient’s social security number, date of birth, and health conditions, security is essential. Cloud security has changed for the better so that healthcare providers can trust that patient confidentiality is maintained in the databases stored in the cloud.
Compliance with DQSA/DSCSA
The Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA / DSCSA) was signed by President Obama in 2013. This law mandated that certain prescription drugs be tracked from the manufacturer all the way to the patient. With cloud computing and programs like MedPro Systems, tracking of these drugs is easier and faster. Law enforcement can check to make sure that patients are not “doctor shopping” and healthcare providers can use the system for basic compliance with the DQSA/DSCSA and lot tracing in case of a manufacturer recall.
When a patient has many different healthcare providers, coordinating services so that tests and procedures are not duplicated can be a challenge. Service coordination is made easier with cloud computing. With a medical home, the primary care physician can track a patient’s specialist visits and procedures without having to wait for paperwork to be faxed or sent through snail mail. The electronic records also transfer to hospitals and ancillary services such as physical therapy. This helps to facilitate a better patient experience.
Management of medications can be another challenge for patients with complex health needs. The cloud has made it easier for physicians and pharmacies to keep track of a patient’s medication history. This information can be helpful when tracking drug allergies and when checking for potential drug interactions. Duplicate prescriptions can also be avoided with cloud-based medication management databases.
The services offered on the cloud are constantly changing. From enhanced security and authentication features to expanded databases and networks, the cloud is making healthcare management and patient services less complex. The changes with cloud computing enhance the safety of patient care and make is easier for doctors, pharmacists and other medical personnel to manage the full aspect of a patient’s healthcare needs.