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Cloud-Based EHR Software: Real-Life Applications, Benefits, Challenges, and Migration Steps

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The Electronic Health Record (EHR) landscape is undergoing a robust change driven by the rapid adoption of cloud technologies in healthcare. According to Gartner, EHRs are digital versions of patient health records that store, manage, and transmit sensitive medical information. At this point, cloud-based EHR is when EHR meets cloud technologies. 

The Global Healthcare Cloud Computing market is growing, expected to surpass around $201 billion by 2032, with a CAGR of 17.6% from 2023 to 2032. As of 2022, the market was valued at $41.4 billion, with North America accounting for the highest revenue share of 51.0%. Respectively, the growing market naturally spurs the increasing interest in the topic at hand. That is why keeping tabs on EHR cloud-based solutions is a must. 

Keeping tabs on EHR cloud-based solutions is a must

This article will showcase cloud EHRs from different angles and offer a complex perspective. We will plunge into market insights, migration, comparisons, advantages, pitfalls, etc.

“At SPsoft, we see the future of healthcare as digital and cloud-based. Our commitment to this vision is unwavering as we develop secure, compliant, and scalable EHRs. As a result, we’re offering a product and a long-term solution that evolves with the healthcare landscape.”
Mike Lazor
CEO, SPsoft

“In healthcare technology, the cloud is not something from the future. It is something from the present. Our engineering team focuses on leveraging cloud capabilities to create EHRs that are robust, secure, agile, and interoperable. We lay the foundation for a healthcare system where seamless, real-time data exchange is the norm, not the exception.”
Romaniya Mykyta
Head of Product Management, SPsoft

Exploring the Surge in Cloud-Based EHR Adoption: Market Trends and Insights

Cloud-based EHR refers to an electronic health records system where the software and the data it houses are stored on remote servers, typically managed by an EHR vendor. That enables healthcare staff and patients to access the system from virtually any location through an Internet connection. This section explores the cloud EHR landscape to understand where the technology moves.

The Cloud-Based EHR Landscape: Trends and Statistics

While grasping the EHR cloud-based markets with statistics is challenging, we can at least show in which direction the overall trend is moving. These numbers indicate that cloud EHRs are rapidly growing:

  • According to Brandessence Market Research, the global cloud EHR market is projected to reach an estimated $53 billion by 2027.
  • A study by Grand View Research revealed that cloud EHRs accounted for over 50% of the EHR segment’s revenue in 2021.
  • EHR Intelligence reports that 15% of hospitals are considering replacing their on-premise EHR systems with cloud-based solutions.

The adoption of EHR cloud-based systems is not merely a passing trend but a significant shift in how healthcare providers manage and access patient data. The market statistics underscore the growing confidence in cloud-based solutions, making it a suitable time for healthcare organizations to consider migration.

Reach out to discover the nuances of cloud-based EHR software and see how it enhances healthcare interoperability.

Deciphering the Choice: Cloud-Based vs. On-Premise EHRs Through Several Key Criteria

When embarking on the journey of EHR implementation, healthcare providers are often faced with a pivotal decision: opting for a cloud-based or an on-premise solution. This choice goes beyond the mere matter of deployment. Essentially, various key factors influence the selection between cloud-based and on-premise EHRs.

  • Implementation Cost. Cloud-based systems usually have lower initial costs but may incur a higher Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) over time. On the other hand, on-premise solutions have higher upfront expenses but may result in lower annual costs.
  • Time to Implement. Cloud EHRs can be set up quickly, while on-premise solutions often require a more extended setup period.
  • Data Security and Privacy. Cloud-based systems are often perceived as more vulnerable to data breaches. In turn, on-premise solutions are considered more secure but require the organization to manage security protocols.
  • Interoperability and Integration. Cloud EHRs are generally more compatible with other cloud systems and can be integrated with various apps more easily. On-premise solutions often face challenges in this area.
  • Scalability. Cloud-based systems can be scaled effortlessly, while on-premise solutions may require additional extensions for scaling.
  • Customization. EHR cloud-based systems offer limited customization options set by the vendor. On-premise solutions allow for extensive customization to meet an organization’s specific needs.
  • Data Safety and Backup. The vendor is usually responsible for data security and backups in cloud-based approaches. With on-premise solutions, the organization must plan for backups and disaster recovery.
  • Support and Maintenance. Cloud EHR vendors often provide quick and efficient IT support, while on-premise solutions require hardware and in-house personnel for maintenance.
  • Accessibility. Cloud-based EHRs require a stable internet connection and offer remote access. On-premise systems do not require constant internet connectivity but are not accessible remotely.
  • Data Management. Cloud-based systems offer limited data management options, while on-premise solutions allow centralized data control within the organization.
Cloud-based and on-premise EHR comparison
Figure 1. Cloud-based and on-premise EHR comparison

The decision between cloud-based and on-premise EHRs is complex. Each type has pros and cons, which significantly impacts the healthcare facility’s performance and operational efficiency.

Are you eager to understand the intricacies of EHR interoperability? Read this comprehensive article that will serve as your guide to the future of seamless healthcare data exchange.

A Detailed Roadmap for EHR Cloud Migration

Gartner states that EHR implementation and migration is a sophisticated strategic clinical initiative. Without a doubt, transitioning the healthcare organization’s medical records to the cloud is a monumental challenge, including the risk of data loss or corruption. However, these risks can be mitigated with a well-thought-out migration strategy. This section will outline a step-by-step guide to ensure a smooth and secure migration of your EHR system to the cloud.

A detailed roadmap for EHR cloud migration
Figure 2. A detailed roadmap for EHR cloud migration
  • Preliminary Analysis. Begin by examining the specifics of your current system to identify any gaps in data formatting or storage. For example, if your existing on-premise EHR contains plain-text entries like “seafood allergy,” these should be translated and codified according to standards like ICD-10.
  • Team Assembly & Strategy Selection. Assemble a team comprising a project manager, business analyst, end-users, and an EHR migration expert. This team will be responsible for selecting the most appropriate cloud EHR vendor and migration strategy.
  • Virtualization. Consider using virtual environments to manage large datasets securely. Options include application packaging and streaming, hosted applications, and virtual desktops, each with its policy-based access controls.
  • Data Security. Consult with your IT team or vendors to divide data into manageable portions for secure transfer. Ensure your chosen migration strategy aligns with your overall data governance and security protocols.
  • Assess Current Information Policies. Review your existing information governance rules to ensure they can be extended to cloud storage. That may involve implementing stricter controls on data intended for the cloud.
  • Assess Current Cloud Storage Usage. Investigate any existing cloud storage practices within your organization, especially those that may pose data loss risks.
  • Establish Credible Expectations. Communicate policies to prevent unauthorized use of unsecured cloud services for storing patient data.
  • Set Organizational Objectives. Develop a consensus on what data will be moved to the cloud and what the migration aims to achieve, especially concerning sensitive information.
  • Involve Stakeholders. Engage all parties responsible for data entry, access, and HIPAA compliance. That includes medical staff, compliance personnel, HR, IT security, and third-party data security consultants.
  • Assess Costs. Conduct a 5-year TCO analysis to compare different migration options, considering costs for hardware, software, maintenance, training, and professional services.
  • On-Site Testing. Before finalizing the migration, insist on a short Proof of Concept to evaluate the ease of installation and usage in your specific environment.

Successfully migrating an EHR system to the cloud is a multifaceted process that requires meticulous planning, the right team, and a robust strategy. Healthcare organizations can mitigate risks and ensure a seamless transition by following the comprehensive guide above. That sets the stage for enhanced operational efficiency and data management in the cloud.

In search of a detailed overview of EHR software systems? Uncover essential facts, valuable insights, and everything you need to know in this expertly curated article.

Pioneers in the Cloud: Real-Life Examples of Cloud-Based EHR Systems

Adopting cloud-based EHR systems is a great move that healthcare organizations make to improve efficiency, scalability, and patient care. This section will examine seven real-world examples of healthcare entities successfully implementing cloud EHR, each with unique challenges and solutions.

Real-Life Examples of Cloud-Based EHR Systems
  • Novant Health. This North Carolina-based healthcare network transitioned to Epic’s Virtustream Healthcare Cloud platform to enhance its existing EHR system. The move freed up engineering resources and streamlined operations, demonstrating the efficiency gains possible with cloud-based solutions.
  • Veterans Affairs (VA). Initially reliant on a non-interoperable VistA system, the VA migrated to a cloud-based Electronic Health Record Modernization (EHRM) system. This monumental shift enabled the seamless transfer of 50TB of veterans’ health records, improving the continuity of care.
  • The Carter Clinic. Specializing in behavioral health, this North Carolina clinic adopted Practice Fusion’s cloud EHR for its customizability and robust customer support. The system also facilitated telehealth services and simplified document management.
  • School District EHR. Faced with compliance challenges for student medical information, a school district opted for the cloud-based EduHealth software. Custom features like emergency reporting and active directory log-in helped the district align student health data with state and CDC guidelines.
  • CareCloud. Initially hosting its EHR services in physical data centers, CareCloud transitioned to the ClearDATA Healthcare Managed Cloud on AWS. It was done to focus on innovation without compromising compliance or scalability. Such companies are at the forefront of introducing new tech, such as NLP, into EHRs. 
  • Practice Fusion. It offers an EHR cloud-based system, which is highly rated by 70% of its users in a Reaction Data survey. It has a dashboard interface, customizable templates, and HIPAA-compliant communication tools.
  • eClinicalWorks. This web-based EMR system received high customer ratings for its integrated practice management and patient engagement features. Over half of its users were classified as “Advocates” in a Reaction Data survey, indicating strong recommendations for the system.

The above seven real-world examples illustrate the diverse needs and solutions in the healthcare sector, showcasing the adaptability and effectiveness of cloud-based EHRs.

Unveiling the Benefits of Cloud-Based EHR

According to McKinsey, innovations in EHR have the potential to grant equal access to healthcare. The healthcare industry is increasingly turning to cloud-based EHR for many compelling reasons. Here are some of the key benefits of cloud based EHR. 

Advantages of cloud-based EHR systems
Figure 3. Advantages of cloud-based EHR systems

Ubiquitous Accessibility

Cloud-based EHRs offer the luxury of accessing real-time clinical data from virtually anywhere. Whether you use a desktop, tablet, or smartphone, you only need an Internet connection. That benefits healthcare providers operating across multiple locations, fostering efficient decision-making and keeping everyone connected.

Cost Efficiency

Opting for a cloud EHR can reduce initial hardware and on-site IT staff expenses. Moreover, the off-site software and data storage maintenance further cuts operational costs. Vendors can handle software updates and other tasks remotely, eliminating the need for an in-house IT team.

Easy Scalability

For healthcare practices with an eye on growth, cloud EHRs offer the flexibility to scale operations easily. Unlike traditional on-premise systems requiring extensive network reconfiguration to add new users, cloud-based systems allow for straightforward user account additions.

Fortified Security Measures

One of the standout features of cloud EHR systems is their heightened security protocols. These systems often employ advanced encryption methods that secure data from end to end, ensuring that only authorized individuals can access sensitive information. Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of protection, requiring multiple verification forms before granting access. 

Streamlined Deployment

The ease and speed of implementing EHR cloud-based systems are particularly advantageous, especially for larger healthcare practices that cannot afford prolonged transition periods. Unlike traditional on-premise systems that require extensive hardware setup and software installations, cloud-based solutions are often ready to use almost immediately after purchase. 

Effortless Data Backup

One of the unsung benefits of cloud EHRs is the automatic backup feature. Data is continuously saved in multiple secure locations, eliminating the risk of data loss due to hardware failure or other unforeseen circumstances. This automated backup system provides healthcare providers the peace of mind of knowing their critical patient data is always safeguarded.

Comprehensive Patient Records

Cloud EHR offers the unique advantage of unifying all patient-related data into a single, easily accessible record. This centralized approach allows healthcare providers to view a patient’s complete medical history, including previous diagnoses, treatments, and test results, all in one place.

Reduced Hardware Needs

With data and applications hosted in the cloud, there is no need for extensive on-site hardware, further reducing capital expenses.

Thus, from cost savings to enhanced security and accessibility, these benefits of cloud based EHR systems are too significant to ignore.

Begin your exploration of EHR applications and discover how they are transforming healthcare. Take the first step toward a future of advanced, secure, and seamless health data management.

Pitfalls of Cloud EHR Software and How to Avoid Them

While cloud EHRs offer numerous advantages, they have challenges. Understanding these pitfalls can help healthcare providers make informed decisions and take proactive measures to mitigate risks.

Hidden Expenses

While EHR cloud-based systems often require less upfront investment in tech and staffing, they can come with hidden costs. Subscription-based models may require additional payments for extra features, support, or add-ons. Moreover, the practice may need to upgrade its internet bandwidth to accommodate the data processing demands of the new system. To avoid surprises, it is crucial to thoroughly understand the total cost of ownership before committing to a cloud-based solution.

Reliability Concerns

The effectiveness of a cloud EHR system is heavily dependent on a stable, high-speed internet connection. Practices in areas with reliable internet service may need help with system lag or outages. To circumvent this issue, ensure the vendor provides transparent information about the product’s bandwidth requirements. Besides, consider the reliability of your internet connection before making a decision.

Security Questions

While certified cloud EHRs are required to be HIPAA-compliant, security remains a concern. It is essential to verify that the EHR vendor and the cloud service provider adhere to stringent data handling and security practices in compliance with HIPAA. That ensures your confidential patient information is securely stored in the cloud.

Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)

Although cloud EHRs may have lower initial costs, the total cost of ownership can be higher due to additional charges for customization, increased storage, hardware upgrades, and data transfers. To make the system more cost-effective, consider performance optimization and explore various revenue streams, such as charging patients for portal access or appointment scheduling.

Data Breach Risks

The healthcare industry is particularly vulnerable to data breaches, and EHR cloud-based systems are no exception due to their remote accessibility. Choose a reputable software development company to mitigate this risk and inquire about their security measures. Additionally, you must train staff to minimize human errors and implement legal safeguards against industrial espionage.

Resistance to Change

Transitioning to a new system can be stressful for medical personnel, often requiring extra work hours to adapt to new workflows. To ease this transition, listen to employee concerns, offer comprehensive training sessions, and ensure that department leaders set positive examples. Besides, you should create a budget for a temporary dip in productivity during the initial months following the system’s implementation.

By understanding these pitfalls and taking proactive steps to address them, healthcare providers can make the most of the opportunities cloud-based EHR systems offer.

Elevate Your Healthcare Practice with SPsoft’s Cloud-Based EHR Solutions

In an era where the healthcare landscape is rapidly evolving, SPsoft is a beacon for healthcare providers looking to modernize their operations. Leveraging cutting-edge cloud technology, SPsoft offers comprehensive EHR integration services. It ensures a seamless transition from traditional on-premise systems and positions your healthcare organization for future success.

Why Choose SPsoft for Cloud-Based EHR Integration?

The advent of cloud computing has revolutionized the healthcare sector, making advanced IT solutions more attainable for healthcare providers of all sizes. SPsoft’s experts harness their deep understanding of cloud technology and the healthcare industry to provide secure, flexible, and cost-effective solutions.

Resilience in the Face of Uncertainty

In a world where healthcare providers must be prepared for anything—from natural disasters to pandemics—SPsoft’s cloud-based EHR systems offer an added layer of resilience. Our solutions are designed to adapt to rapidly changing conditions, ensuring that your practice remains operational and that patient data is accessible when it is needed most.

Value for Your Investment

Transitioning to a cloud-based system does not stop with adopting new technology. It continues as a smart investment in your company’s future. SPsoft ensures you maximize your investment by offering scalable solutions that grow with your practice. Our focus is on delivering value, not just technology.

Ensuring Patient Data Security

Patient data security is a top priority, and SPsoft’s cloud EHR solutions are designed with this in mind. Our systems comply with all relevant regulations, including HIPAA, to ensure that sensitive patient information is securely stored and accessible only to authorized personnel.

Thus, SPsoft is more than a service provider. We are your partner in modernizing and future-proofing your healthcare practice. Our cloud EHR integration services offer robust security and the scalability needed to adapt to an ever-changing healthcare sector. 

Final Remarks

The transformation of the EHR landscape is undeniable, and cloud technology is at the forefront of this evolution. Market projections and real-world implementations point to a decisive shift toward cloud-based EHR solutions. These platforms offer unparalleled advantages in terms of accessibility, cost-efficiency, and adaptability, making them an invaluable asset for modern healthcare providers. 

However, the journey to cloud EHR has its challenges. From hidden costs to data security concerns, healthcare organizations must navigate a complex landscape to fully reap this technology’s benefits. That is where SPsoft comes in. With our top-notch cloud EHR integration services, we will guide you through every transition step, ensuring a secure, efficient, and future-ready healthcare operation.

Contact us and get started with a cloud-based EHR application that can redefine healthcare data exchange.


What is a сloud-based EHR system?

A cloud-based Electronic Health Record (EHR) system is a digital solution that securely houses patient medical records on servers located off-site, typically managed by a third-party provider. This setup allows healthcare professionals to access, update, and manage patient information from virtually anywhere, as long as they have an internet connection.

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