Why Your Disaster Recovery Plan Should Include a Cloud Provider

Effective disaster recovery planning for hospitals and healthcare organizations means being able to both anticipate and mitigate risk before disaster strikes. Yet, even thought the healthcare industry is required under HIPAA to protect personal health information at all times, disaster preparedness and planning should extend beyond managing compliance.

In fact, the lack of a comprehensive disaster recovery plan not only leaves facilities vulnerable to financial and operational risk. However, it could also cost millions in lost revenue.

While facilities do the best they can, says Jason Myers Vice President of IT and Cloud Services for MEDHOST, the investment required to avoid downtime and support disaster recovery can be too high for some to support. That’s why many are looking to simplify and make the move to cloud services through a hosted service provider.

“If they leave their IT systems inside their four walls and do it reasonably well, the costs become too expensive for a single facility,” Myers says. “That’s why moving those systems to a cloud provider with disaster recovery services to leverage scale makes the most sense.”

Disaster Recovery

In the wake of 2017, a historic year for natural disasters, disaster recovery is still very much top of mind. In fact, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the cumulative damage of weather and climate disasters last year caused at least $306 billion in damage—making 2017 the most expensive year on record for disasters in the United States.

Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria collectively affected an area with about 8 percent of the U.S. population. In Texas, 92 hospitals reported around $460 million in losses following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. Although the vast majority of that loss comes from facility damage, $48 million comes from office closures, billing and claims disruption, delayed or unpaid insurance claims, and more.

Myers says that today, it’s not a question of if a disaster will occur—it’s when.

“If you’re not willing to invest heavily in the protection of your data and your systems. it’s impossible to stay out in front of the hackers and bad actors trying getting your data,” Myers says.

Here are some of the ways that a cloud service provider like MEDHOST can help minimize downtime, simplify the recovery process, and keep hospitals compliant in the wake of a disaster:

4 Ways to Utilize a Cloud Service in Disaster Recovery

  1. Simplify internal IT complexity. By moving software to cloud solutions, the risk of working internally to patch. Also, update, and upgrade servers in a timely, effective manner disappears. “To re-establish your business, the only thing your IT team needs to focus on is how to get connectivity,” Myers says.  In disaster environment, local IT staff on the ground can then make better use of their time by supporting clinicians.
  2. Tailor customizable solutions. Since the needs of each organization are unique, our solution was built to be tailored or customizable for facilities, to help get up and running faster after a disaster.
  3. Reduce cost of ownership. Through MEDHOST’s Disaster Recovery Service, the cost to maintain all hardware, operating systems software and replication software is included. The plan features 24/7 monitoring and management, 365 days a year, helping make disaster recovery preparedness more affordable, while also fortifying your system’s resilience.
  4. Avoid costly regulatory penalties. The ability to recover from extended outages or disasters within an acceptable time-frame required to avoid expensive penalties and maintain compliance. Cloud service providers eliminate replication and failover responsibilities for your internal team, helping expedite the recovery process.

To learn more about MEDHOST’s High-Availability Disaster Recovery System and how your operation can ensure continuity in the face of disaster, click here.

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