November 27, 2023
In the healthcare industry, where the stakes are high and margins for error slim, the significance of efficient and functional IT systems — including 24/7 service desks — cannot be overstated. Healthcare facilities are tasked with the dual responsibility of providing exceptional patient care while efficiently managing multiple operational aspects, including the often-overlooked IT infrastructure. However, many challenges persist in the realm of healthcare IT, causing a significant drain on healthcare profits, budgets, and resources.
While technology has transformed the way healthcare operates, freeing staff to help more people in expedited timeframes, a few hurdles have emerged that complicates deploying superior, cost-saving IT systems. Firstly, there is a critical shortage of skilled IT professionals, hindering organizations’ ability to fully leverage these advanced healthcare technologies. This staffing crisis impacts not only the pace of technological innovation, but also the effectiveness of healthcare delivery.
Adding to this complexity, the rapid expansion of telehealth, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has brought forth a new era of remote healthcare… One requiring IT resilience and agility. However, this requirement becomes increasingly difficult to sustain with limited IT resources plus a staffing shortage.
What’s more, the rise in cyber threats targeting healthcare systems exacerbates these challenges. These sophisticated attacks pose serious risks to patient data security and necessitate specialized cybersecurity expertise, which are in short supply.
Clearly, healthcare organizations have their hands full in balancing their needs, often overlooking how much they may be losing from a poorly managed IT system… But what does it really cost? Let’s explore the figures.
The financial implications of unplanned IT downtime in healthcare is profound. Research indicates that organizations using in-house IT management experiences downtime up to 85% more than those using a managed service provider, like ChartLogic’s 24/7 service desk. (source) That has a wide-sweeping implications on budget, considering on average, healthcare facilities lose about $7,900 per minute during IT system failures. (source)
Further, there are compounding factors that impact these operational disruptions. For instance, an idle Electronic Health Record (EHR) system can dramatically hinder a hospital’s operations. This could not only cost on average about $8,662 per minute of downtime, (source) but also negatively affect patient experience, like missing critical appointments and impair the functionality of various hospital departments. What’s more, this jeopardizes patient trust and safety, as the risk of data breaches during these periods is more likely, leading to the exposure of sensitive personal health information (PHI).
Data Breach Costs
Speaking of cybersecurity threats, the healthcare industry is one of the most targeted sectors by cybercriminals, primarily due to the sensitive nature of the data handled by these organizations. With a vast array of personal information that can be exploited for identity theft, fraud, and other malicious activities, healthcare entities present a lucrative target for attackers. In fact, one study highlighted that in 2019, 70% of malware attacks were aimed at healthcare and public health sectors. Unfortunately, it’s only increasing as technology becomes intertwined in today’s business, as healthcare data breaches were reported at a rate of nearly two per day in 2021. (source)
The consequences of such breaches are severe. In fact, HIPAA fines for noncompliance can range from $100 to $50,000 per violation (source), with an average fine reaching up to $1.5 million. (source) Additionally, the average cost associated with each patienct record compromised in a breach is around $400. (source). But again, this doesn’t account for indirect costs associated with a breach, like patient trust, damage to reputation, and the potential disruption to patient care.
The indirect costs associated with mismanaged healthcare IT extend far beyond immediate financial losses. When healthcare systems fail or fall victim to cyberattacks, the disruption to patient care can have far-reaching consequences. Not only is there a breach of patient trust, but the quality of care provided also suffers, directly affecting a healthcare facility’s reputation and financial health. Research suggests that a single negative patient experience, often linked to inefficient IT systems, could potentially translate to a loss of up to $400,000 in profit over the course of a patient’s lifetime (source) due to diminished loyalty and the associated decrease in future revenue streams. (source)
Moreover, the internal impact on healthcare workers is considerable. High levels of work-related stress reported by as many as 70% of healthcare professionals (source) can lead to burnout, (source) increased turnover, and a higher incidence of medical errors. (source) These issues not only affect patient outcomes but also contribute to a cycle of rising operational costs and staffing instability.
In this complex landscape, a 24/7 IT service desk managed by healthcare industry experts is a strategic asset. Offering around-the-clock IT support and critical industry expertise, it aids in navigating the intricate challenges of healthcare IT, ensuring robust infrastructures and effective contingency plans.
ChartLogic’s 24/7 service desk not only alleviates financial strain, potentially cutting operational costs up to 40%, but also minimizes IT downtime and its impacts. (source) ChartLogic provides a comprehensive solution that enhances operational efficiency, patient care, staff satisfaction, and regulatory compliance. This transition to more effective IT management reduces downtime and data breach risks, fostering a resilient, patient-centered healthcare environment.
With ChartLogic’s 24/7 service desk, healthcare partners gain an indispensable ally in the complex healthcare IT sector. Our IT experts provide an invaluable resource for healthcare organizations seeking to streamline IT operations and concentrate on their primary mission of delivering exceptional patient care. To discover how ChartLogic can revolutionize your healthcare IT, request a consultation with ChartLogic today!