Last week I conducted an executive briefing for the CTO of a very large, multi-hospital system based in Asia-Pacific. I won’t reveal the CTO’s name or his company out of courtesy, but I will share something he said to me. He told me that by moving all of his healthcare system’s operations to the cloud using Windows Azure and Office 365, he is saving more than 80 percent over what he had been spending maintaining services on premises. And let me tell you, a savings if 80 percent of this guy’s operation is no small number.
As health systems around the world struggle to conform to a new era driven by the quest for higher quality, better access and lower costs, all will need to examine every possible way to achieve greater efficiency. I think cloud solutions have matured at just the right time in history to help healthcare organizations meet the demands and challenges of this new, leaner environment.
Also of interest, today Microsoft announced the next generation of Surface tablets—Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2. The new devices are faster, thinner, and lighter. Surface Pro 2 with a keyboard/power attachment called Power Cover offers meaningful battery-life improvements so it lasts nearly a full workday (over 10 hours). And, with its new Docking Station, Surface Pro 2 is most definitely a tablet, a laptop, and a high-powered workstation in one device. For keyboard input, there are also advances in the Type and Touch Covers. Touch is more responsive than ever. Type is quieter and now available in colors. Both keyboard covers are even thinner, more rigid, and have backlighting with proximity sensing that lights up as your hands approach the keys.
I’m writing this HealthBlog post using my Surface Pro. Since last April, it has been my primary device for use at work and on the road. It is hard for me to fathom that our device team has made Surface even better, because I am already so satisfied with my Surface Pro. It has also been rewarding for me to see our devices catching on in the workplace, and their growing popularity with clinicians. I believe Surface 2 will be even more popular with clinicians and with IT departments because, like the first generation of Surface devices, Surface 2 works so well in meeting the needs of enterprise environments.
Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 will be available for pre-order starting September, 2013 and for purchase on October 22, 2013. Both will ship with Windows RT 8.1 and Windows 8.1 Pro, respectively. Learn more on the Surface blog.
What’s not to like about saving money in healthcare!
Bill Crounse, MD Senior Director, Worldwide Health Microsoft