Healthcare Organizations are not unlike other verticals and face a growing challenge of cost associated with running their IT operations. The growing pace of data demand, access to user systems 24×7 all contribute to more demand for processing and computing capacity. Although the compute power has continued to accelerate with technological advancements of chip technology, virtualization and other technologies, infrastructure continues to be expensive.
The technology industry faced with this challenge has introduced the concept of cloud technology. Vendor afforded computing capacity that provides for an environment that can be utilized as your computing needs call for them or can be reduced accordingly as well. One would seem that it’s an ideal solution to this growing on premise, capital intensive option that businesses have been employing for quite some time.
The Slow Adoption of Cloud Technology
With the advent of cloud technology, comes additional concerns around security as well as compliance for regulated industries such as Healthcare. Hence we find that Healthcare organizations overall have been slower to adopt this cloud technology. One could argue that its due to these security concerns, after all, patient data is highly regarded in the black market. Certainly a case can be made for security but we believe that the challenge on meeting compliance also has a great deal to do with the lesser adoption.
Cloud Providers may not have done as much as may be needed in meeting specific compliance and individual client security needs.
Healthcare organizations in general are the least prepared and less invested sectors against cyber-attacks. These healthcare organizations face about one cyber-attack per month it is estimated while struggling to find effective strategies to keep the systems safe. Ponemom Institute in a recent research show that about 48% of those organizations they surveyed had a breach involving loss or exposure of PHI in the past year. They identified the biggest threats as system failures, unsecured medical devices, and unsecured mobile devices. Healthcare organizations also have to concern themselves with security but also compliance.
Building the Right Solutions
Cloud as we come to know it tends to be public in nature, one large entity that various users come and share in some way or form. This sharing is an issue for Healthcare organizations and the stringent segmentation of data that is required of them. Cloud providers in general have addressed the masses or larger cloud consumption and the model lends itself to that. Think of it in terms of a bank and a lockbox. A bank has fortified building, alarms, video cameras, bars, certifications, a very large safe, etc. This in some way represent the cloud provider as they facilitate a similar environment for one to use their service. They work hard and invest in these capabilities. You as customer then bring your application/workload into this environment much like a customer would bring certain possessions into a lockbox inside the safe and in the bank noted above. Cloud providers are not in the business of taking care of the lockbox itself but rather the bank environment that the lockbox is in. Which means that if a customer in this case in Healthcare is going to abide by HIPAA regulations they will have to ensure that not only the bank portion meets regulatory requirements but also the lockbox portion does as well or they will not be in compliance.
The Lumen21 Compliant Cloud Computing Platform
Incorporated in 2007, Lumen21 has a clear future, built on a solid history of innovation, experience, and adaptability. The company is named for “Lumen,” a Latin word that means to understand and see clearly, and “21” is a number that represents the times in which we live and all the changes in business and technology. Its ability to provide comprehensive technology-based solutions for businesses’ often complex needs, especially in the area of compliance, has helped the company to create a solid reputation in the industry.
Lumen21 Compliant Cloud
Computing platform was developed specifically to meet the need of organizations like healthcare, banks, and credit unions, by offering all the benefits of a great cloud infrastructure with the management, security and compliance required for regulated based industries. The Lumen21 Compliant Cloud Computing Solution is HIPAA compliant and validated by HITRUST (Health Information Trust Alliance) Common Security Framework. It allows customers to leverage the Microsoft Azure Cloud or The Amazon AWS platform and its scalability without compromising the security of patient health or financial information. The solution is compliant “out-of-the-box” and is audited to be compliant. Lumen21 offers this capability as a service so that organizations don’t have to concern themselves with assembling the building blocks provided by a given cloud vendor.
The compliance effort is a collaboration of entities. The cloud vendor, in and of themselves cannot do that by themselves and neither can the customer. It is the sum of the parts that make the whole as compliance is not a statement but rather a process. The good news is that with Lumen21’s Compliant Cloud Computing Platform it is within the reach of clients to have the needed pieces in order to be able to take full advantage of the benefits the cloud has to offer and be able to do it while having a high level of security and meeting the HIPAA regulatory requirements.