How can Healthcare Organizations Ensure Successful Cloud Migration?

How can Healthcare Organizations Ensure Successful Cloud Migration?

Healthcare Tech Outlook | Wednesday, July 31, 2019

To ensure seamless migration of data and infrastructure to the cloud, organizations need to plan and form effective strategies.

FREMONT, CA – Healthcare organizations are migrating their infrastructure and data to boost scalability and accessibility. Although most IT leaders approach cloud migration with specific goals, the process is often challenging. Hence, forming strategies ahead of time will aid organizations to avert financial pitfalls and minimize operational risks.

Before migrating, organizations need to review application architecture and coupling. Performing application assessments will aid organizations in identifying the required architecture, depending on whether they seek to leverage infrastructure as a service (IaaS) or platform as a service (PaaS).

The cloud is revolutionizing the design of applications. Each application requires a robust architecture to support its requirements. Applications are being decomposed into compact, decentralized services which communicate through APIs and synchronous messaging. The evolving trends are introducing new challenges to cloud migration. Hence, it is advisable to determine the application coupling status.

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Currently, the application state is distributed, and the operations are performed asynchronously. Hence, the systems need to be resilient enough to recover from failures. Monitoring and telemetry will enable organizations to gain insight into the system. Establishing a proper governance structure before migration will allow organizations to ensure efficient processes, procedures, policies, and accounts.

Maintaining system hygiene throughout the IaaS adoption lifecycle can optimize cost and security. Also, training and educating the staff regarding the transition plays a crucial role in ensuring a successful migration. Healthcare organizations can make the most out of cloud migrations by mapping effective strategies beforehand.

Post determination of overall business goals and expectation of the proposed cloud migration, organizations can turn their attention toward tactical consideration, including the bandwidth requirements. Often, moving processing to the cloud can result in degraded performance. Organizations also need to consider the distance to the cloud hosting site, bandwidth, and the method of transferring applications.

Healthcare organizations will also need to consider security and privacy when migrating to the cloud. Although cloud vendors are aware of regulations and provide certification, contractual remedies, and technology solutions, the providers are responsible for compliance. Hence, organizations need to conduct a comprehensive review of the cloud vendor’s security and privacy policies, procedures, and precise documentation of audits before finalizing the contract.

To ensure compliance, the IT teams will have to make sure that their disaster recovery (DR) management meets the HIPAA requirements. It also requires the backup data to be encrypted and stored in secure locations to ensure their protection. Compliance failure can lead to increased exposure to risks and penalties.

Although public, private, and hybrid clouds can be considered, organizations often prefer private clouds to maintain ownership of the infrastructure. However, it cannot match the cost-effectiveness and versatility offered by public cloud services. Several organizations are choosing to employ hybrid clouds, a mix of both private and public cloud hosting, based on applications and storage.

Preplanning can help healthcare organizations achieve increased dividends down the road. Understanding the business requirements and the readiness for cloud migration will assist them in developing robust migration strategies, thus ensuring a successful transfer of applications and operations to the cloud.

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