Technology offers new opportunities in healthcare software product development by improving access, streamlining data collection, advancing patient care, and much more.
From medical records to insurance to devices and equipment, every aspect of the healthcare industry uses technology and can benefit from the latest developments in software applications.
But it’s a complicated industry. Let’s discuss some of the challenges, and the possible solutions, for healthcare organizations.
The healthcare industry is heavily regulated, and these regulations are continually updated. Additionally, they vary by region and country. But healthcare organizations track things for a reason. With software, you have a traceable history of completed tasks and documented policies to prove to external agencies that you’re acting in accordance with their regulations. For example, hospital management software offers a lot of advantages for organizations working to prove compliance for multiple agencies, including OSHA, JCAHO, CDC, and the FDA, as well as private insurance companies.
Adapting to change is the mantra of any healthcare organization. But sometimes it’s hard to see the changes coming. Scalability simply means healthcare software can accommodate changes in size or volume as needs change. From a business standpoint, software scalability is cost-effective because your software can adapt even when you can’t predict these changes. For example, scalability measures the software’s ability to handle increasing workloads and data, as well as adjust to changes in the number of users.
Back in the day, developers designed software for a desktop monitor—because that was the only place to use the software. Today it’s more complicated, thanks to new and constantly changing devices. It’s highly likely any healthcare organization will use more than one type of device: desktop, tablet, mobile, etc. And don’t forget the Internet of Things (IoT) devices, which are becoming more common in healthcare as well. Strong user interfaces that work across platforms make the software more intuitive and seamless, helping to streamline workflows.
Data confidentiality is one of the most challenging aspects of healthcare software product development. Security is vital at multiple levels, and it must be considered and tested throughout the project lifecycle of any healthcare application. You want to prevent data theft and unauthorized access, as well as circumvent other security issues. The security testing process evaluates security vulnerabilities using various techniques and tools. Security testing involves vulnerability scanning, security scanning, penetration testing, security auditing, and security review.
Healthcare organizations rely on an assortment of systems to capture, store, and report on data. It’s also likely these applications use a wide array of file and data exchange formats. Integrating the data received from a heterogeneous database and transforming it to a single coherent data store can synchronize that data across a network of files. For example, software for medical devices enables data to be moved quickly and easily in and out of different systems. That provides benefits like fewer errors due to manual data entry, reduced data input redundancy, faster response times, and real-time monitoring.
Healthcare organizations often need a higher level of customization depending on business needs that require a specialized or unique approach. Custom software development can optimize internal business processes and automate logistical functions. The ability to customize means healthcare organizations will have special features for specific workflows.