As the healthcare industry evolves and adopts new technologies to streamline operations and provide better care, healthcare organizations require top IT talent to navigate these initiatives and integrate them seamlessly into existing infrastructure and systems.
An IT team dedicated to guiding healthcare leaders through tech challenges can smooth out learning curves, allow for innovation with new technologies, and ensure compliance with data privacy laws. It all starts with staffing the right healthcare IT talent for your team.
Let’s explore the top challenges in the healthcare space and the IT roles you should be staffing to help navigate them.
Top Healthcare Challenges With IT
Healthcare facilities, like hospitals and doctor’s offices, face many IT hurdles, including:
- Managing cybersecurity risks
- Integrating new technologies with existing infrastructure
- Maintaining data privacy
1. Managing Cybersecurity Risks
Healthcare institutions deal with highly-sensitive personal and confidential information, requiring extra encryption and security efforts to comply with industry laws. And with the introduction of telehealth (virtual care), it has never been more vital.
According to Deloitte, the COVID pandemic increased cyber threats at nearly 86% of U.S. organizations, including healthcare. Kisha Hortman Hawthorne, SVP and CIO at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), explains the increase:
“Healthcare organizations across the country continue to see exponential increases in malicious attempts such as malware and ransomware, data breaches, insider threats, compromise of passwords (password spraying), phishing and vishing scams, and cloud threats” to sell the data for a hefty profit.”
If you lack a complete IT team to implement comprehensive protection, access control, and measures to combat these cyberattacks, your healthcare facility and patient data might be at risk. Cybersecurity analysts, systems admins, and security engineers can help prevent attacks before they wreak havoc.
2. Integrating the New With the Old
Like most industries, healthcare has undergone a complete digital transformation—hospitals and healthcare systems continue to leverage new and emerging technologies to create better patient experiences, assist doctors, create streamlined record-keeping processes, and more.
While the strides are impressive, the healthcare industry still struggles with integrations and interoperability. As CIO explains, many healthcare organizations rely on legacy solutions (like on-prem systems) that make transitioning to the cloud and cloud-based applications arduous.
- Virtual care platforms and online patient portals must integrate seamlessly with records systems and scheduling software.
- Healthcare facilities collect terabytes of data, but with no standard format, much of this data isn’t compatible with new systems.
- Newer systems and technologies—especially cloud-based ones—may not work well with existing technology or infrastructure, causing interoperability issues.
Software engineers and business systems analysts are crucial IT roles that can assist in a seamless digital transformation.
3. Ensuring Data Privacy
Data privacy remains a top concern, especially in the healthcare sector. Not only are you dealing with sensitive information (like patient records), there are dozens of privacy laws to comply with, including those around patient data and how you share that information.
Compliance with these laws, HIPAA, and data privacy regulations require an IT team that understands how to protect data at all costs and can implement technologies without compromising security and privacy.
IT professionals who are certified in data privacy disciplines that combine a strong knowledge of compliance and privacy laws with IT skills are often referred to as data privacy officers, data privacy managers, etc. For example, Infosec shares an example of the “CIPT (Certified Information Privacy Technologist), as someone implementing privacy in applications and systems and the “how” of privacy from a technology perspective.”
Bonus: Finding the Right People
Even after you’ve identified your top technology challenges, you might struggle to find qualified healthcare IT talent to fill the tech roles you so desperately need.
According to CIO Dive, healthcare tech leaders continue to struggle to find talent to fill their IT roles due to a talent shortage. The healthcare IT needs have outpaced the talent supply to meet those needs. Craig Richardville, Chief Information and Digital Officer at SCL Health, echoes this sentiment:
“The top challenge for me is, actually, people: finding the right talent available at the right price with the right value proposition, whether they’re internal or external.”
Do you know what roles to look for? Sources like CIO and Becker’s Hospital Review list just a few of the top IT roles in healthcare like:
- Systems analyst or administrator
- Business systems analyst
- Software engineers
- Data scientists
- Business intelligence developers
Need Help Finding the Right Healthcare IT Talent?
Don’t drag your digital transformation by not hiring the top healthcare IT talent available. A healthcare IT staffing partner can help you put together the best team to embrace new technologies that give you a competitive edge, allow you to improve patient care, and much more.
You need visionary leaders who can see the big picture, developers with the know-how to keep your data and systems safe from threats, and support staff to train and troubleshoot new technologies.
Prosum can help. We take an empathetic, people-first approach to hiring top-notch tech talent that lets you deliver top-notch care. Request IT talent today for your healthcare organization.