Technology in Healthcare: The Constant Battle Against (Down) Time

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The role of technology in the healthcare industry has reshaped how we look at patient care, hospital management, innovation and treatment. In recent years especially, the healthcare industry has pushed the limits of both people and institutions. With many instances in healthcare, comes the battle against time. The loss of productivity can quite literally be life-threatening. The latest industry report by SOTI, A Critical Investment: Taking the Pulse of Technology in Healthcare, shows us that organizations are experiencing all types of downtime:

  • 97% of IT professionals reported time lost to downtime
  • 60% of IT professionals in general medical practices/clinics say their organization experiences downtime with IoT/telehealth medical devices, leading to patient care delays
  • On average, technical or system difficulties lead to each employee losing around 3.5 hours per week, with 36% experiencing between three to five hours of downtime

Increased Technology Leading to Increased Downtime

Over the past few decades, many industries including healthcare, have undergone an important digital transformation. Today, a standard healthcare facility relies on a variety of complex networks consisting of hardware, software and cloud-based systems. All these components need to work in sync for the facility to operate efficiently given these systems revolve around storing patient records, analytics, backups and radiological images to name a few. To maintain this complex network, facilities schedule frequent planned outages for maintenance and upgrades. Any and all unplanned outages or downtimes in any part of this complex system can immensely impact the operations of the facility, not to mention patient care. The cost of IT downtime within the healthcare industry ranges between $5,300 to $9,000 per minute. Some of the real losses include:  

  • Loss of revenue and productivity
  • Compromised data
  • Patient safety
  • Brand and reputation damage

However, when it comes to this industry specifically, the loss goes beyond thousands of dollars per minute. In many instances, patient safety is compromised or patient data is exposed. During unexpected downtime, healthcare workers are forced to use outdated practices such as paper-based methods for healthcare delivery. Hospital staff may be unfamiliar with downtime contingency plans and workflows leading to improper records and high-risk, near-miss incidents. 

In our report, A Critical Investment: Taking the Pulse of Technology in Healthcare, 65% of organizations continue to be eager to improve patient care with better technologies despite frustrations from device downtime. The control, flexibility and innovation that healthcare technology provides has proven to significantly improve patient care as well as lower costs for all healthcare organizations. The report also discusses how to navigate the frustrations and balance integration bottlenecks along with the desire for more technological disruption. To navigate frustrations due to privacy, security and downtime, and make the most of the long-term benefits of newer technologies, it is crucial to have a strong, supporting framework in place. 


Download your free copy of Taking the Pulse of Technology in Healthcare