The old adage goes that money doesn’t grow on trees. That’s still true, but close to Bakersfield’s numerous (if spread out) buckeye and scrub oak trees, there’s a source of capital that may be just as good for local medical facilities. Your hospitals can get a share of the $6.2 billion in funding that was formally approved as a part of California’s most recent healthcare bill through a combination of applications and incentives. $3.3 billion1 of that goes directly to helping hospitals reform their infrastructure and modernize their technology systems.
The first step, of course, is the examination. What systems are holding you back? Which pieces of infrastructure will work for the next decade? How efficiently is your hospital using its available resources (like electricity, bandwidth, IT staff, and so on)? DiamondIT can help you give your system a “checkup” and identify the strong and weak points within your network so that you can implement an IT roadmap that will make the most of your funding allocation. It all starts with an initial assessment.
IT Checkups Assess Comprehensive Network “Health”
When our team first walks into a new client’s office, we do a full technology business review, looking at the client’s bills, multi-function products, phones, IT system, and office workload. We’ll identify weak spots; for example, if employees are using 25% of their time working on specific technology issues, that’s not cost effective. We figure out what your organization is spending and why — then how to cut those costs. For existing clients, we do this review quarterly or annually.
During these “checkups,” we’ll examine a few main areas of your hospital’s IT nervous system:
- IT wiring.
- The possibility of consolidating servers with virtualization.
- Software systems.
- Cost of daily operations like printing, internet, and phone bills.
- Line of business applications.
- Consolidating your hardware spending.
After our initial assessment, we’ll lay out a three-to-five year plan for your hospital and work with you to develop a budget that tackles the upgrade in phases. Higher priority issues, like cybersecurity weaknesses, will be tackled first, with more long-term solutions, like implementing a cloud, to follow. A lot of hospital clients come to us looking for a cloud solution once the cost of hosting their EMR gets too extravagant. We personally recommend the cloud solution for hospitals because it opens up the door to smoothly implement other necessities like backups, compliance, and cybersecurity, and it frees up resources within your budget.
Free Up Capital Funds by Cutting IT Costs
When we go in to perform network assessments for hospitals, we’re looking for ways to save you money on operating costs. We reduce your operating costs by developing a system with faster response times, less server “downtime,” and cost-effective IT solutions that will save money on a daily basis by using less power and improving workflow. The technology is out there, so we help you identify which solutions you can leverage to cut costs for your organization.
One of the first things we do during an assessment is review your technology contracts. If you’re used to spending $10,000 a month on everything, we’ll often find we can reduce it by 30 percent. By reducing your expenditures with vendors, we just freed up $3,000 a month. Now, can go to your Board of Directors requesting to use that extra money for capital expenditures. It’s amazing the kind of resources that can be freed up by just leveraging your IT system to make money or save money, and the cloud is an especially cost-effective IT solution for hospitals.
One way that the cloud can cut your operating costs is that once DiamondIT installs your cloud network, we handle all your network maintenance, which frees up resources and labor within your own staff. Because the cloud solution cuts your month-to-month IT expenses by reducing your overhead and your electricity costs, you’ll also be freeing up extra funds to upgrade your hardware and software down the line. One client even repurposed their old server room to an additional patient exam room, creating additional revenue in services and energy savings.
Cloud Solutions: The Most Frugal IT Investment Your Hospital Will Make
Getting a cloud solution for your hospital isn’t like buying a Porsche after getting a raise; it’s more like investing in a Prius to cut your monthly gas expenses. A cloud solution would be feasible and frugal even without the reform bill, but these newly available funds are the perfect opportunity to assess your hospital’s network and upgrade your operating system to cut costs in the long run. This bill was passed because legislators understand how essential it is for hospitals to be operating with the best infrastructure possible, and DiamondIT understands that as well. We take pride in working with clients in the medical industry to help them positively influence as many patients’ lives as possible. Reach out to us, and we can get started on assessing your systems for potential cloud solutions.
- Virgil Dickson, “California Gets $6.2 Billion in Medicaid Transformation Waiver,” Modern Healthcare, Jan. 4, 2016, http://www.modernhealthcare.com/article/20160104/NEWS/160109976. ↩