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EHRs + Cloud Computing = Business Opportunities?

Photo: medicexchange.com

The push for effective electronic-health records aided by cloud computing, which offers services stored and accessible via the Internet, could be the perfect partnership for new business opportunities, a pithy write-up in this week’s Economist suggests.

But even with the policy nudge toward EHRs, led by White House Chief Technology Office Aneesh Chopra, and the technological buzz surrounding all things cloud, it won’t be an unimpeded path to a technological utopia any time soon, the article reasons.

That’s because with the rise of cloud computing — the federal technology initiative du jour — many firms offering solutions have rebranded theirs cloud, whether they actually are.

“The danger is that America’s health services have foisted upon them whatever the industry has to sell, rather than what is needed,” per The Economist.

Second, companies, themselves, are aware the medical industry is actually fairly “anti-innovation,” in the words of one EHR firm, or what the magazine calls the “reflexive conservatism and technophobia of medical folk.”

In the face of these hurdles, though, cloud firms are still evangelizing.

Stephen Herrod, chief technology officer of major cloud player VMware, said he sees success because of the “surging popularity of smartphones, tablets and other hand-held gadgets” coupled with federal policy mandates leading up to an “unstoppable force,” according to The Economist.

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