I’m sure you’ve all seen the headlines recently about Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Salesforce deepening their partnership. The integration of these two powerful platforms will provide immense firepower to digital strategies while reducing the cost of development and time to market.
The slow digital transformation in healthcare
A 2019 McKinsey survey indicated that only 14% of executives across industries claimed their digital transformation efforts have achieved sustainable performance improvements. In healthcare, the current state is even more disappointing, largely due to the siloed nature of healthcare organizations. The silos have often impacted the design and implementation of new technologies.
While CRM enables sophisticated workflows that increase efficiency and improve patient experience, there’s so much more that can be done, and much of that power lies in the data. Over the years healthcare organizations have collected large volumes of data through electronic health records (EMR) and other clinical systems. This data has made its way into purpose-built databases such as those for population health and clinical research. Unfortunately, most of these efforts often have limited goals and the infrastructure supporting these activities is bound by the goals of those organizational units. As an example, there have been thousands of machine learning research projects creating algorithms for better care and engagement but very few have made their way to the frontlines. Why? Because there just isn't a common infrastructure to move the data and algorithms from the research workbench to operational implementation.
“The truth is, data capabilities are siloed, mirroring the organizational silos that have resulted in fragmentation of care delivery and patient experiences.”Sawad Thotathil
CRM initiatives have often had to confront these silos. Digital initiatives such as those powered with Salesforce Health Cloud often get disempowered because data is not available in the shape and form that is needed for deep patient personalization and engagement. Integration with live data from the EMR and periodic extraction and transfer of limited datasets from the data warehouse can only go so far. AI enablement requires a much higher level of sophistication. Every algorithm requires a data pipeline of real-time computed data making its way to the frontline process.
As an example, the call center agent setting up an appointment for the caller must be able to provide recommendations based on the patient’s latest data that originates in the clinical systems and other socio-economic datasets. The siloed architectures today make this kind of project a time-consuming and costly endeavor.
So how is the Salesforce AWS integration exciting news for healthcare organizations?
This is where AWS's deep integration with Salesforce can be powerful. As the fastest-growing cloud provider, AWS is making its way into many health systems. Healthcare organizations are increasingly leveraging Amazon S3, Amazon Redshift, and other technologies to unlock data for use in a variety of ways. The AWS infrastructure is bringing agility and scalability to healthcare data architectures. The storage and computational possibilities will no longer be bound by technical constraints resulting from organizational silos. And with the integration with Salesforce, the power of that data will be easily available on the frontlines from call centers to self-service tools to care management. The unified development capabilities will reduce the cost of development and time to market for ambitious projects that leverage the combined capabilities of the two platforms. If access to data was holding a healthcare organization back in comprehensive digital transformation, that will no longer be the case.