What to Look for in a Managed IT Services Provider for Healthcare
Engaging a Managed IT Services provider is an important decision for any organization. As more healthcare organizations turn to Managed IT Services to control costs and improve productivity, it’s important to vet any potential candidates and understand that while the services provided may be similar, the level of support can differ greatly.
Be sure to consider both generic and general IT needs as well as healthcare specific services when choosing a provider. They should all provide at least these specific services:
- Application Hosting
- Application Services
- General Infrastructure Services
- Strategic Outsourcing
- Computing Solutions
Some providers may also add cloud based management as a part of their contract. When choosing a provider, seek out a Managed IT Services provider that specializes in healthcare whenever possible.
Specifics to look for…
When interviewing potential providers, make sure they offer specific services for healthcare organizations including:
- Guaranteed Response Times – Your provider should spell out specific response times within your agreement. Most will offer 24/7 solutions. Choose someone who guarantees an actual response time around the clock in writing!
- Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery – Your provider should assist with recovery in the event of a crisis. They should maintain redundant systems and automate switching or bypassing in the event of a cyberattack, outage or natural disaster.
- Manage Applications – They should manage and monitor software application performance, keeping apps updated to current versions including all security patches. This includes not only your network, but individual devices like smartphones and tablets.
- Offer Proactive Security – Security, especially in healthcare, is crucial. Any potential provider should take a proactive approach including core security services like identity or biometric security and data encryption. The law requires specific security measures when it comes to healthcare. Make sure your provider is compliant.
- Provide Audit Management – Healthcare compliance issues require periodic audits. Your Managed IT Services provider should keep a list of compliance needs that auditors will look for, and ensure that your organization is prepared. This could save you from thousands of dollars of fines which would be your responsibility to pay.
When interviewing providers make sure they offer the specific services you need and all requirements that the healthcare industry expects under the law. A Managed IT Services provider can make your workflows smoother, lower your costs and increase productivity. Ask the right questions and you’ll find the right partner to add to your team!