The shift to cloud-based services has led to incredible advancements in the healthcare industry. By enabling information to be accessible remotely, software as a service (SaaS) has negated the need for hosted servers and, in doing so, has reduced cost and increased access to information.
Today, SaaS providers facilitate easier collaboration, allow for quick scalability and integration without requiring infrastructure, and provide ease of use, seamless upgrades and much more. It is no surprise then that the adoption rate of the SaaS model in the healthcare industry is growing at a rate of 20% per year, and the cloud computing market in healthcare is predicted to reach $51.9 billion by 2024.
The current Covid-19 pandemic has driven adoption forward, and the healthcare industry has been forced to be flexible and agile in response. In essence, it has been the world’s biggest test case for technological adoption. Where it may have historically been perceived as costly, risky or complex, now technology is seen as an enabler and the foundation to catapult global healthcare into tomorrow's world.
Technology and cloud-based solutions can support the conduct of global clinical trials, including millions of data points from tens of thousands of unique trial participants while being fully connected and fully functional at all times. Nowhere is this more prevalent than in the vaccine trials for Covid-19. We're seeing drugs going through phase 1 to phase 3 in six to nine months compared to what has typically taken a decade. And while the need for speed in this instance is obvious, the process has, by proxy, highlighted the limits in the broader trial process. With the success of the Covid-19 trials, there is no doubt that the learnings will be like ripples in a pond to other therapeutic areas where time is also of the essence, such as oncology and certain rare diseases.