The healthcare industry has a heavy responsibility. Patient outcomes depend on accurate and complete information from lab records to patient history and throughout the varied healthcare supply chain. And, as patient\u2019s interest in staying informed and understanding both their own and their loved one\u2019s genetic profiles grows, they are transforming into healthcare consumers. Long labeled a technology laggard, in recent years these changes have aided in helping the healthcare sector recognize the importance of embracing digital transformation to making data more accessible, easier to manage and more secure.\nWith critical patient data flowing through various stages of the healthcare journey, the value of information to the healthcare sector can truly mean life or death. Effective information management ensures the flow and delivery of that information, offering healthcare professionals a chance to make a real difference\u2014both in process improvements and patient outcomes. The ability to quickly access and share information from various sources transforms the healthcare industry with data-based insights for a real Information Advantage.\nOne recent Deloitte study predicts that by 2040, if not earlier, the industry will merge many streams of health data and other relevant information to \u201ccreate a multifaceted and highly personalized picture of every consumer\u2019s well-being.\u201d IDC foresees big changes even sooner, expecting hospitals\u2019 use of the Internet of Things to have doubled by 2020. It also expects health organizations will gain competitive advantages by integrating clinical and financial data into their operations.\nThe Information Advantage in healthcare \nWith digitized and centralized information, the healthcare industry will see multiple improvements, including:\n\nImproved patient treatment: Easier information access and management helps ensure the right documents get to the right people quickly and securely for safe, efficient, and high-quality patient care as well as keeping healthcare consumers more informed. \u00a0\nSecure electronic data: Communicating information quickly to different devices in the formats their recipients require supports fast, secure data reporting and sharing. This is particularly important as cyber security concerns continue to impact the industry with some of the highest costs associated with data breaches. \u00a0\nIntegrated systems: Integrating electronic medical record (EMR) systems, enterprise resource planning (ERP) software and other enterprise solutions offers enhanced visibility for more complete patient records.\n\nProhibitive costs once held back the healthcare industry, but secure cloud-based services have opened up the path to efficient and connected information management.\nConsider, for example, how ZOLL Medical Corporation manages critical information. In 2006, ZOLL acquired LifeVest\u2014the world\u2019s first and only wearable defibrillator. The vest offers patients advanced protection and monitoring, as well as improved quality of life. The device requires a prescription from a cardiologist, as well as documentation to support the diagnosis. Every day, ZOLL received hundreds of faxed orders along with supporting documentation for the LifeVest device.\nTo manage the growing volume of these critical LifeVest faxes, ZOLL deployed OpenText\u2122 RightFax\u2122. This hybrid cloud system helped ensure the company can deliver devices quickly, manage Protected Health Information (PHI) in HIPAA-compliant ways and serve patients cost effectively. For patients at risk for sudden cardiac arrest, receiving the LifeVest as quickly as possible is vital.\nUsing cloud-based services can provide the scalability, performance, security and future-proofing the industry needs, without the need to invest in new internal IT infrastructure and maintenance. By moving to the cloud, health organizations can automate tasks, manage a wide variety of file types and keep data secure, both in transit and at rest. Other benefits include:\n\nCost efficiency: With the cloud, document delivery is assured with one simple, monthly fee.\nSpeed: Cloud-based document delivery is fast and automatic, whether it\u2019s to a printer, fax machine or via digital systems, such as EMRs or mobile devices.\nFlexibility: Most cloud-based services support a range of delivery options and can accommodate virtually any file size.\nSecurity and auditability: The right cloud system can ensure the security of sensitive data and provide comprehensive audit features, such as realtime tracking and delivery confirmation.\n\nThe healthcare sector may have had a slow start but it is now picking up speed and moving from \u2018digital laggard\u2019 to \u2018digital evaluator\u2019. Health organizations can embrace the opportunity to improve patient experiences and operational efficiency with faster, centralized, efficient, and secure ways of exchanging information, all resulting in a better healthcare consumer experience and, ultimately, improved patient outcomes.\nContact us to learn more about how OpenText can help healthcare organizations gain an Information Advantage.