Enterprise Imaging in the Cloud: Overcoming Challenges and Increasing ROI

GE Healthcare

One of the hottest topics in radiology today is cloud computing, in which enterprises leverage cloud technology to host applications and their sensitive data, ending the need for local hosting and the on-site hardware, software, and IT services it requires. Moving into the cloud, however, represents a paradigm shift for many practices, particularly small-and medium-sized groups. The shift from on-prem IT infrastructure to virtual-hosted solutions is one that has been coming, but the pandemic, along with advances in cloud security and storage, have accelerated its adoption.

This movement to the cloud is one of the biggest shifts in the industry since the transition from medical film to digital. And many of the questions we hear are similar: Will it be fast enough? How much cost differential will there be? How will it impact our workflow? What is the return on investment (ROI)? We tackle many of those questions in the latest episode of the Healthcare IT Talks podcast with Chris Hafey, Principal Clinical Imaging Business Development Manager at Amazon Web Services (AWS), available on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Understanding the different cost structures for cloud computing may be a big transition for healthcare organizations. One reason is rather than paying a one-time cost for a capital expense, cloud services are an ongoing Operating Expense (OPEX) using a Software as a Service (SaaS) model, so it can be hard to plan.

On the flip side, a major advantage of the cloud is the disappearance of many infrastructure and IT related costs, as well as implementation challenges. The cloud provider abstracts many of the variables of a traditional on-premise deployment, which changes the dynamic. Providers can remain updated with the latest software without worrying that the existing hardware can’t run it; they can easily request additional storage without worrying about space restrictions; and build an entire online application environment with the cloud provider in minutes with virtual machines, services, and storage just by clicking a few buttons. This fast deployment saves valuable time and resources.

Other advantages that need to be considered when calculating ROI include the ability to:

  • Use a test system with the same specifications as the production system to create automated testing and ensure it meets all performance requirements.
  • Roll back software instantaneously in the unlikely event of a problem.
  • Transfer responsibility for many aspects involved in running clinical applications, such as security, uptime, software upgrades and scalability, to the cloud provider.

You can learn more about enterprise imaging in the cloud and other topics related to the power of AI and the cloud computing in our Healthcare IT Talks podcast, available wherever you listen to podcasts.

Schedule a virtual or on-site visit with GE Healthcare during RSNA to learn more about how we can help you leverage the cloud. Live meetings: November 28 – December 2 Virtual meetings: January 3  – January 28


*GE Healthcare and AWS cloud deployment is currently only available in the U.S.