How Cloud-Based Services are Helping Maintain Critical Care and Connectivity in the ‘New Normal’

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France and Italy were two of the early coronavirus epicenters, but thanks to aggressive containment measures, both countries have flattened the curve. Technology providers stepped up in a variety of ways to support government and healthcare officials in their efforts to mitigate the spread of the virus, delivering cloud-based solutions to improve collaboration, maintain patient care, and relieve overworked staff.

For example, the rapid growth in cases in France created an urgent need for emergency management personnel to identify people who had potentially been infected with COVID-19 and match them with available resources. Equipment was in short supply and many healthcare professionals were isolated at home, so a cloud-based solution was needed to provide the fastest possible results.

Applisoins, a logistics solution originally developed for use on the French island of Réunion, was adapted for use by COVID-19 patients and caregivers in less than three weeks. People who think they might be stricken with COVID-19 can use the free service to make an appointment with a healthcare professional with just a few clicks. Providers can quickly respond with their readiness to accept patients.

The pandemic also created a need to provide services to healthcare professionals themselves who were working around the clock. Happytal helps healthcare organizations improve the patient experience as well as healthcare professionals’ quality of life at work. The company, which provides its services to more than 400 French hospitals, partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to build a new app for healthcare workers in just five days. The Happyhéros application relieves hospital workers from day-to-day tasks like grocery shopping, laundry, and even ordering taxis. The service expanded to more than 35,000 users across 15 hospital groups in just four weeks.

The speed and scale enabled by cloud-based services also played a key role in supporting COVID-19 efforts in Italy. For example, Italian software company Exprivia partnered with SRIM, the Italian Society of Medical Radiology, and AWS to deliver eRIS, a collaborative platform that enables radiologists to share and comment upon results of x-rays and CT scans, enabling them to better understand the progress of the disease. Machine learning will soon be applied to identify likely candidates based upon common characteristics.

The Italian region of Lombardy accounted for nearly half the country’s coronavirus death toll. Building on foundational work at Milan State University, Link-up created an application in less than a week that helps healthcare staff track positive and suspected positive coronavirus patients after discharge from the hospital. This enables follow-up medical treatment to be offered at home. The COD19.it platform lets healthcare providers check patient vitals such as temperature and respiration rate, offer help, and log progress through to recovery. High-level updates are shared in real-time dynamic dashboards with regional authorities tracking progress against the disease. The result: Better intelligence about the spread of the disease across the entire region.

These four examples clearly demonstrate how Amazon Partner Network (APN) partners are helping to ensure that residents and caregivers can access critical services and information in times of crisis.

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