Nutanix, a leader in private cloud, hybrid and multicloud computing, announced the healthcare industry findings of its third annual Enterprise Cloud Index Report, measuring healthcare organizations’ plans for adopting private, hybrid and public clouds. The findings point to a growing trend within the sector: with more than two-thirds (70%) of respondents reporting that COVID-19 has caused IT to be viewed more strategically within their organizations and the pandemic has accelerated digital transformation that is likely to shape the future of healthcare.
As COVID-19 hit, healthcare organizations looked for ways to effectively support the skyrocketing technology demands of the COVID-19 pandemic—from enabling remote work, to implementing telehealth practices, to supporting an increasing patient load. As a result, they sought out IT solutions that could support their organizations’ growing needs and support their digital transformation. With digital transformation top of mind, the healthcare industry is more bullish than any other sector about adopting a hybrid IT model, with 95% of respondents agreeing that hybrid is their ideal choice.
Today, more than half of healthcare respondents have increased their public cloud (56%) and hybrid cloud (51%) use and nearly half (46%) have invested more in private cloud environments in an effort to quickly provide new work-from-home employees with access to IT resources. While 77% of healthcare respondents previously had some employees working remotely one year ago, that percentage has increased to 93% this year since the onset of the pandemic.
The future of healthcare is dependent on decommissioning of legacy architecture: Currently, more healthcare companies run exclusively traditional, non-cloud-enabled datacenters (27%) than any other industry, compared to 18% globally. Over the next five years, however, healthcare organizations plan to shrink that gap with an expected 21-percentage-point drop in legacy datacenter installations and a corresponding 32-point increase in hybrid cloud deployments.
Healthcare organizations look to hyperconverged infrastructure to support IT modernization and pave the way to hybrid cloud: Hyperconverged infrastructure is often seen as the basis for a hybrid cloud infrastructure, the HCI of the next decade, as it helps accelerate cloud adoption by sharply reducing the time it takes to build the software-defined infrastructure necessary to support private cloud, while also providing the scalability of cloud technology. About 64% of healthcare respondents say they’ve either fully deployed HCI or are in the process of doing so, significantly outpacing the approximately 50% of global respondents who are using or deploying hyperconverged infrastructure.
Security, privacy, and compliance pose a significant challenge to the industry’s digital transformation: 58% of healthcare respondents described security as a significant challenge, compared to 51% of global respondents. Healthcare respondents also ranked cost control (45%) and business continuity (45%) more often as significant challenges than any other industry.
As the healthcare industry evolves, cost advantages will be the main gating factor for IT infrastructure deployments: All industries, including healthcare, indicated that security, privacy, and compliance solution strengths were highly important to infrastructure decision-making.
“Healthcare organizations are in a critical phase of expediting their digital transformations to better meet patient and healthcare worker needs, all this jump started by COVID-19,” said Cheryl Rodenfels, Healthcare Strategist at Nutanix. “While IT leaders agree that hybrid cloud is a key enabler of this transformation, healthcare organizations need to identify IT solutions to help them on this journey, from investing in HCI-powered private clouds, to finding ways to effectively bridge their private and public cloud environments while keeping security and cost top of mind.”
The 2020 respondent base spanned multiple industries, business sizes, and the following geographies: the Americas; Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA); and the Asia-Pacific (APJ) region.
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