Healthcare organisations (HCOs) around the world are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits afforded by cloud computing and are embracing the technology at a rapid pace, which will create a market worth USD5.4bn by 2017, research firm MarketsandMarkets predicts in a report entitled "Healthcare Cloud Computing (Clinical, EMR, SaaS, Private, Public, Hybrid) Market - Global Trends, Challenges, Opportunities & Forecasts (2012 - 2017)".
Last year the global market for healthcare cloud computing was valued at USD1.7bn and the projected increase over the five-year period translates into a compound annual growth rate of 20.5%. The penetration rate for cloud healthcare amounted to 4% last year but the figure is expected to rise significantly in the next few years as a growing number of HCOs adopt the technology and set aside more funds for migration to the cloud, MarketsandMarkets says.
The healthcare sector can derive significant benefits from cloud computing. Hospitals and clinics need quick access and large storage facilities and traditional settings cannot provide them. In addition, HCOs require their data to be shared across multiple settings and geographies, which puts a strain on medical providers and patients, resulting in treatment delays and loss of time. Cloud computing addresses those issues, making it possible for HCOs to improve services, share data with greater ease than ever before and enhance operational efficiencies, the report points out. However, there are some specific industry requirements which are slowing down the adoption rate and cloud vendors need to take them under consideration. These include security of patient information, interoperability and compliance with government regulations, MarketsandMarkets notes.
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