In the healthcare sector, Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) is about agility, mobility, and long-term benefits—it is not about immediate cost savings. So states Knowledge Sharing author, Justin Beardsmore, who posits that a VDI rollout should be viewed as a clinical change process that is grounded within the IT vision of providing fast and secure access to patient data from anywhere.
In this Knowledge Sharing article—awarded 1st Place in the 2014 Knowledge Sharing Competition—Justin presents a strong case that consistent, fast, and secure desktop access—along with ease and variety of access—will greatly enable faster adoption of Electronic Patient Records (EPR) systems. A major challenge to realizing this goal is how to ease the tension between IT and the organization.
A well planned and executed Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) deployment will offer significant benefits. However, a number of components, people, and processes need to move together in order to achieve this change and create the clinical desktop workspace. This is what CIOs and their IT teams need to deliver, in order to reduce the tension between IT and the organization and move the debate away from infrastructure to digital health.
Justin cites the following areas as primary drivers:
• Standardization of desktop infrastructure (application virtualization, better release control process).
• Simplified desktop support for the user and IT department.
• Security and Governance (Data does not leave the data center).
• Operating Systems (OS) migration (can solve the Windows XP migration).
• New indicatives and projects (BYOD, organizational mergers).
Rolling out VDI to over 90% of an organization is a transformation process. The vision is to provide faster access to patient data, anytime, anyplace, anywhere. This will improve efficiency, which in turn leads to better patient care. However, before embarking on the journey it is important to understand that it is not a short journey and be aware of project pitfalls. In the clinical front office areas, it is the vision which is going to hold the project together during early setbacks.
This Knowledge Sharing article is aimed at CIO'S and IT professionals who are looking at VDI as a viable technology within the healthcare sector.