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Cloud may help healthcare providers strengthen data integrity

Rachel Wheeler Archive
Data quality is essential to healthcare, as impaired information can cause physicians to misdiagnose patients, which may lead to poor treatment or worse. By leveraging cloud computing technologies, healthcare facilities can store, analyze and access large volumes of confidential information from virtually anywhere, enabling providers to make better use of their time and administer better service, according to a Porticor report.

A separate study by MarketsandMarkets found that more than one-third of healthcare facilities are using the cloud, while 75 percent of organizations not using the cloud are considering doing so.

While the cloud has the potential to improve efficiency, decision-makers need to ensure the right level of protection for sensitive files. Administrators need to identify which types of data can be migrated to the cloud and the appropriate levels of security needed, Porticor noted. Personally identifiable information, for example, will likely need more robust protective tools to keep it safeguarded.

Healthcare managers should establish an access policy, as some individuals may be more privileged to view sensitive information than others, Porticor said. Decision-makers also need to ensure that only authorized staff members have encryption keys capable of deciphering protected data.