Transforming Healthcare with Cloud Computing

The digital revolution has sparked an explosion of data in healthcare. An estimated 30% of the world’s data volume is generated by the healthcare industry; the growth of that volume is outpacing the manufacturing, financial services, and media and entertainment industries.1

As a result, healthcare organizations face the daunting tasks of managing and processing this onslaught of information for useful purposes, such as making clinical decisions, billing healthcare payers, and completing other tasks integral to healthcare delivery.

Enter the Cloud

Many of these challenges are increasingly being addressed by transferring server-based databases, software solutions, and other tools to the cloud. Google Cloud is one vendor that offers a suite of scalable, on-demand cloud computing resources.

Kieran Anderson, vice president of Anderson Publishing, Inc., and group publisher of Applied Radiology and Applied Radiation Oncology, recently spoke with Joe Miles, the managing director of healthcare and life sciences industries at Google Cloud.

Miles’s  team works with customers to identify key pain points and help develop IT and cloud solutions to address their challenges.

“Our mantra is about helping the world organize their healthcare and life sciences data to make it more accessible, useful and available to organizations,” said Miles.

 

 

The importance of interoperability

Interoperability – the capability of healthcare systems to share data with each other – is a particular focus at Google Cloud. “We know from talking to physicians and opinion leaders across the industry that having an interoperable, 360-degree view of the patient is critical to making a faster diagnosis for a better outcome,” he said.

Exchanging unstructured data, such as medical images, is especially challenging. Accounting for an estimated 80% of healthcare data,2 unstructured data is not machine readable and requires significant processing before it can be used by artificial intelligence-based analysis tools. Miles said transferring this data to the cloud can bring about a sea change in healthcare delivery by integrating traditional clinical data with imaging and streaming data.

“Google helps organizations get an interoperable view of the patient, then take that data and run it through algorithms and machine learning scenarios to draw insights and make predictions. We help them get out in front of these areas where historically we never had that opportunity to do that,” he said.

 

 

Data supports the patient experience

Miles believes clinicians and patients will increasingly rely on data interoperability to inform patient care. As patients take more control over their own healthcare, cloud computing will give them easier access to information that can help them to make more informed decisions regarding their care.

“The new world is all about meeting the patient where they are and delivering data so the physician, whether they’re in their own institution or in telehealth, still has access to all of that relevant data – and can use it to draw greater insights in a variety of different ways,” he said.

Cloud computing can also transform healthcare delivery. That’s a key reason why Google Cloud is collaborating with Change Healthcare to leverage virtualization and big data constructs that live in the cloud, enabling efficient management of large data sets and large elements of medical imaging  data.

“We’re very excited about the solutions we’re working on with Change Healthcare relative to what that means from an innovation perspective,” he said.

As the cloud continues to evolve, Miles believes investments will grow in developing multi-cloud strategies. When organizations manage information across multiple public clouds, data sovereignty requires that information to be subject to the laws of the country in which it is collected or processed and to remain within its borders. This affects how health systems access, review, and utilize cloud data.

“You need the ability to bring data together at the same time, maintain compliance to global regulatory scenarios, and understand the data sovereignty issues,” Miles explained. “Yet you also need to understand the data relative to those models, because your ability to run machine learning algorithms against those models is critical. Otherwise, you're leaving a lot of data in the back room where you don’t have access to it.”

To help overcome those challenges, Google Cloud offers a slate of IT and technical resources to support the data management and insights that are critical to the success of healthcare institutions.

“We see a lot of opportunity in bringing a lot of that together to gain greater access to insights,” he said.

For more information visit:  https://info.changehealthcare.com/enterprise-imaging


1RBC Capital Markets: Navigating the changing face of healthcare episode. RBC Capital Markets | Navigating the Changing Face of Healthcare Episode. https://www.rbccm.com/en/gib/healthcare/episode/the_healthcare_data_explosion. Accessed January 20, 2023.

2A closer look at unstructured healthcare data. MDPORTALS. https://www.mdportals.com/post/what-is-unstructured-data#:~:text=An%20estimated%2080%25%20of%20healthcare,images%20and%20any%20faxed%20records. Accessed January 20, 2023.

References

  • 1 RBC Capital Markets: Navigating the changing face of healthcare episode. RBC Capital Markets | Navigating the Changing Face of Healthcare Episode. https://www.rbccm.com/en/gib/healthcare/episode/the_healthcare_data_explosion. Accessed January 20, 2023.
  • 2 A closer look at unstructured healthcare data. MDPORTALS. https://www.mdportals.com/post/what-is-unstructured-data#:~:text=An%20estimated%2080%25%20of%20healthcare,images%20and%20any%20faxed%20records. Accessed January 20, 2023.
© Anderson Publishing, Ltd. 2024 All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without express written permission Is strictly prohibited.