The Growth of Cloud in Healthcare

As someone who’s tracked the healthcare IT industry for 13 years, it’s amazing to see the evolution of cloud in healthcare. I’ll never forget the conversations about “cloud” 8-10 years ago at a CIO focus group. The facilitator asked the CIOs in the group what their approach was to cloud in their hospitals and health systems. At the time, cloud was a new concept, but one that was growing in popularity in the scientific, financial and small-business industries.

In response to the question, one seasoned female CIO responded, “Well, of course, we’re on the cloud, but that doesn’t mean I like it.”

While this was just one isolated incident, it illustrated the culture that was prevalent at many healthcare organizations at the time. 8-10 years ago, health care IT systems were almost exclusively on-premise. There were many reasons for this including: expensive bandwidth (remember how much T1 lines used to cost?), privacy/security concerns, control of the data, HIPAA worries, continued investment in data centers, and inertia.

In the early years of cloud, some early pioneers voluntarily adopted cloud applications while others experimented with using cloud-infrastructure. Over time, healthcare organizations were forced to adopt the cloud because new systems with needed functionality were exclusively cloud-based. I think it would be fair to say that health care was tentative at best (hesitant at worst) about the cloud in these early days.

Since those days, we’ve seen an explosion of cloud options available to CIOs in healthcare. There are now private-cloud options and HIPAA-compliant public cloud options. This has led some organizations to adopt a multi-cloud or hybrid-cloud environment. Other organizations have opened the door to cloud applications while keeping some systems on-premise.

Because of the growth and evolution of cloud, we wanted to get a better idea of where/how/why healthcare organizations are using it. We want to answer the questions: How is cloud being adopted in healthcare? What do you think of when you hear the word “cloud” in your organization? What excites you and what worries you about the cloud? What are healthcare organizations hosting in the cloud and what are they not?

In order to find the answers to these questions, Healthcare IT Today in partnership with Onix, Google Cloud, and Intel is conducting survey of healthcare IT professionals.

Please take 3-5 minutes and tell us your healthcare organization’s experience in the cloud. We’ll be sharing the results of the survey with all those that participate. Plus, anyone who completes the survey will be entered into a drawing for a free Google Pixel Slate tablet.

We look forward to learning about your organization’s experiences and perspectives on the cloud and sharing the insights gleaned from the broader health IT community.

The survey closes March 22nd.

Thanks for completing the Healthcare Cloud survey.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference,, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.


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