All over the world, healthcare providers face multiple unprecedented challenges and workloads both at individual and institutional levels. These include challenges such as not having the required data at the right time. Choosing an Azure managed services provider is a great way to overcome these challenges. Additionally, the response to the pandemic continues to cause mandatory irreversible shifts in how, where, and when healthcare services are provided.
Overall, it has demonstrated the need for change across the healthcare ecosystem. It highlights the need for data management solutions from trusted, reliable partners to help tackle emergent healthcare pitfalls.
Working with an Azure managed services provider (MSP) can significantly streamline your healthcare IT operations. The right MSP can improve the overall performance of your healthcare business.
Today, we explore the five most crucial considerations for choosing an Azure managed services provider for your healthcare facility to help you make informed decisions.
Why and How You Should Work with Azure Managed Services for Healthcare
- Best healthcare outcomes: Azure for health care enables you to provide better healthcare services and deliver the best industry practices with personalized and preventive care. It uses the power of intelligent and reliable AI. Tool: Azure AI and Machine Learning.
- Organized and easy-to-access data: Collect, analyze, process, and safely store clinical and operational data of any category, volume, or velocity. It enables easy access to patient data and accelerates smart healthcare services. Tool: Azure Synapse Analytics.
- Advanced healthcare cybersecurity: Protect and manage data secured in your healthcare IT systems, accelerate machine learning and provide safe access to health data within multiple infrastructures. Tool: Azure API for FHIR.
- Enable system interoperability: Using Azure IoT, safely connect your healthcare tools and devices to a central cloud healthcare management system. This enables real-time access to insights and solutions.
- Accelerated performance: Improve insights in clinical trials, genomics, and precision medicine with advanced performance compute in bioinformatics infrastructure.
- High performance and productivity: Use the power of Azure Stack to develop and manage multiple hybrid applications across the cloud, different data centers, outside clinical facilities, and remote locations.
- Blended reality: Incorporate your digital and physical operations to bring together the best of both worlds. Achieve an immersive, collaborative experience both at the operating room and across other health departments.
- Near-finite security: Stay ahead of security risks with Azure security. This powerful monitoring AI tool guarantees you peace of mind with cloud and edge protection.
With managed services, you can effectively outsource your IT operations to achieve the most of your Microsoft Azure deployments. And choosing the ideal MSP partner is a vital step in enhancing the value of an MSP relationship. Here are five factors to consider when outsourcing the perfect Microsoft Azure managed services provider for healthcare that suits your needs.
5 Considerations for Choosing an Azure Managed Services Provider
1. Level Of Expertise in Microsoft Azure
Working with an MSP allows you complete access to top-notch talent and expertise in every aspect of Microsoft Azure at a competitive cost compared to full-time staff. When choosing an Azure managed services partner, go for one with proven expertise —such as an Azure Cloud Platform Gold Partner.
Professional Microsoft Azure service providers bring qualifications, industry best practices, and experience in planning, deployments, and operational management. This enables you to navigate Microsoft Azure, beginning with pre-sales, purchases, and onboarding. When selecting the ideal MSP partner, consider the following:
- Their overall partner status with Microsoft
- Size of their Microsoft Azure Practice and their talent offerings
- Certifications and experience
- Can their solutions and offerings meet your specific needs? For instance, do they provide application performance monitoring or consistent real-time updates and reporting?
2. Availability of End-to-End Support
The ideal MSP /CSP should walk with you throughout your Microsoft Azure journey. From presales, where they help you conduct infrastructure assessments that determine the right cloud migration path, to determining your business objectives and assessing the level of your readiness for the cloud. From there, they can introduce and implement best practices for cloud planning and migration.
With proactive analysis, monitoring and management, they can seamlessly handle the day-to-day requirements of maximizing the most of Microsoft Azure.
Finally, a reliable MSP can assist you in optimizing an existing Microsoft Azure program. They'll analyze what you already have and recommend what is needed to improve your current operations.
Establish whether your MSP partner has what it takes to solve your Microsoft Azure for healthcare needs. Consider both the present and in the future. Find out whether they can help you evolve and grow with you.
3. Customer Service and Technical Support
Communication is crucial in any partner relations, and Microsoft Azure for healthcare is no exception. You want to work with a partner who has a dedicated account and communications manager who fully understands your business needs to ensure you get the most of the partnership.
Work with a partner who has a technical support team, someone you can run to if you experience a technical hitch, an outage, or a complex question. The ideal MSP partner should have round-the-clock customer support through multiple communication channels.
4. How Compatible are You and Your MSP Partner?
Before settling on the ideal MSP partner, it's important to establish whether you are compatible with each other. Do they offer the exact services you need?
Typically, Microsoft Azure MSPs provide access to proactive, 24-hour monitoring capabilities for your systems and applications. These advanced monitoring solutions sometimes include application performance, log monitoring, alerts, system health monitoring, etc. Besides these, your MSPs should be able to provide operations management, access management, configuration support, and other forms of support.
Research the available services of your MSP partner because it will help you determine if they have what it takes to handle your Microsoft Azure for healthcare needs.
5. The Cost Factor
One of the most significant factors influencing healthcare facilities to work with an MSP partner in managing data for their healthcare operations is cost savings. Ideally, a reputable Azure managed services provider can provide various services at a more competitive or affordable cost than full-time, in-house staff.
For instance, they can offer an initial incentive, such as a free Microsoft Azure managed services trial that can last for as short as a month or as long as 90 days. Additionally, they may offer you exclusive pricing or discounts if you sign up for longer-term engagements.
One specific area where MSPs should be experts is in helping you understand your cloud needs and usage through analytics to forecast future cloud demand accurately.
From there, it's easier to determine your cloud solutions needs so you can only budget for what you're using, then gradually scale up or down as your needs dictate.
As technology continues to transform operations in multiple sectors amidst cybersecurity threats, the healthcare industry is not left behind. Change is everywhere from mobility, cybersecurity, increased patient expectations, to compliance regulations. Statistics show that $2.6 billion is lost annually due to data breaches in healthcare facilities. More than 1GB of health-related data can be created daily by a single person through the help of AI.
Choosing the right Microsoft Azure Managed Services Provider for your healthcare facility is the first step to adopting cloud computing and overcoming most of these challenges. Doing due diligence while choosing the right MSP goes a long way in making informed decisions.