GuideIT Insider June 2023: Recent Cyber Threats, Healthcare Cloud Management, & Service Desk Best Practices

Healthcare Embraces Cloud Services: The Rise of Platform as a Service (PaaS)

In the aftermath of recent transformative events, healthcare organizations are accelerating their adoption of cloud services to meet the growing demand for rapid technological advancements. The healthcare sector is favoring a hybrid multi-cloud approach, with a majority of infrastructures expected to transition to the cloud in the coming years.

Cloud services encompass various models, with the three main categories being software as a service (SaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), and platform as a service (PaaS). Among these, PaaS is emerging as the preferred model in healthcare due to several key advantages.

Traditional SaaS healthcare applications, such as electronic medical records (EMRs/EHRs), telehealth solutions, imaging, and billing and supply chain management, often operate as separate, disconnected systems that store data and solutions in isolated silos. In contrast, PaaS offers a unique cloud-services category that enables users to run and manage software without the need to build or maintain complex infrastructures.

By leveraging PaaS, healthcare organizations can achieve greater efficiency, scalability, and interoperability. It enables seamless integration of disparate systems and facilitates collaboration among different stakeholders, leading to improved workflows and enhanced patient care. With PaaS, healthcare providers can focus on utilizing software applications and optimizing their functionalities without the burden of infrastructure management.

GuideIT understands the evolving needs of the healthcare industry. Our cloud experts can guide your organization in implementing the right cloud strategy, leveraging PaaS and other cloud models to enhance your operational capabilities.

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Protecting Data: Recent Hack Highlights Vulnerabilities in Third-Party Software

In recent news, a wide-ranging hack that centered on a software called MOVEit Transfer has impacted various organizations, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Although no HHS systems or networks were compromised, attackers exploited vulnerabilities in the MOVEit Transfer software used by third-party vendors, gaining unauthorized access to data.

This breach also affected two major law firms, Kirkland & Ellis LLP and K&L Gates LLP. The hackers, known as cl0p, claimed responsibility for stealing data from these firms, as evidenced by the posting of their names on the hackers' leak site. While HHS' name did not appear on the list, it is essential to note that cl0p's previous claims suggest they may compromise data even if they don't intentionally target government organizations.

The extent of the data exposure is still being investigated, with initial reports suggesting tens of thousands of records could have been exposed. The incident underscores the importance of implementing robust security measures, particularly when relying on third-party software solutions.

At GuideIT, we understand the significance of safeguarding sensitive data. Our comprehensive cybersecurity services help businesses identify vulnerabilities, implement strong security measures, and respond effectively to potential threats.

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Meeting Patient Expectations: Enhancing Help Desk Efficiency

Healthcare IT departments are facing challenges in meeting the rising expectations and demands of patients, especially during the transition to electronic health records (EHR) systems. However, help desks often operate below their full potential, requiring a proactive approach to effectively address these challenges.

Patient expectations are evolving, and are driving the demand for patient engagement through health technology. To compete in a consumer-driven market, IT departments must support patient demands while educating clinicians about their role as IT liaisons.

Hospital help desks can play a crucial role in improving physician-patient communication by providing robust support for patient portals. This involves addressing common tasks and inquiries, freeing up internal staff for high-priority projects, and promoting better-informed patients while reducing administrative burdens.

Physicians face challenges such as administrative burdens and EHR burnout, leading to less meaningful patient interactions. As a result, end users may often place blame on the IT department, underscoring the importance of effective help desk engagement.

Help desk calls should be handled by IT systems professionals who can directly address questions, make necessary modifications, and customize preferences for physicians. In cases where internal resources are insufficient, outsourcing to a reputable US-based partner should be considered, with a focus on empathetic and personable communication rather than scripted responses. Proper management of the help desk requires strategic evaluation of current applications, functionality, end-user community, and organizational culture. Flexibility in staffing to meet call levels is crucial, and outsourcing partners can efficiently handle after-hours calls, allowing internal staff to concentrate on system development.

The help desk serves as the face of the IT department and adopting a proactive approach can reduce the need for extensive IT staffing and alleviate physician EHR burden, ultimately leading to a more cohesive and efficient care enterprise. GuideIT is a trusted US-based provider of Hospital Service Desk solutions with a 100% on-shore delivery model providing the highest quality support.

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