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  1. #1

    * Niche That Has Been Overlooked......

    I work in the healthcare industry and what I have come to realize is that for some reason the hosting/dedicated/colo community and the healthcare community have yet to truely be introduced.

    I say this because it even seems that the IT employees within the hospitals/ASC's/Physician Practices don't seem to realize that there are alternatives to what they are currently doing. I will give you a couple of examples...

    I was doing a one year contract as a CFO with a hospital in OK. They used "yahoo" and "hotmail" as their email addresses and hosted their website with the local ISP. There are two IT employees and this was ok with everyone. Didn't matter that there was no professional feel to getting an email from the CEO/CFO of the company that could not even have their own domain email.

    Example 1 - When I came on I got us a server with server matrix and then we had our own website hosted on our server, we had our own email and were able to install some software on our server instead of with a vendor that we were paying roughly $600 a month with.

    Example 2 - I am currently a regional vice pres with a healthcare company in Nashville. Hospitals purchase Healthcare Information Systems (HIM) from vendors that sale them servers and also colo and maint to servers. I have a hospital in OKC that we are paying this HIM vendor $4,000 a month for colo and maint. I just took over this hospital and my mouth dropped. They current CEO/CFO did not realize that they could take their server colo somewhere and pay a fraction of the cost and have the HIM vendor still be able to maintain the software remotely.

    Not sure if anyone is even still reading this...

    I want to bring these two industries a little bit closer... I need help educating the healthcare industry that they don't have to use these fat cat vendors that are completely ripping them off...

    Anyone interested in getting involved and sharing their expertise let me know... or if you have any experiences you want to share...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Detroit, MI
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    1,955
    We've been involved with some HIPAA projects and the costs are tracked back, in most cases, to the auditing and regulation required. It all depends on the project of course.



    Kind Regards,

  3. #3
    It is one thing on the purchase side of the software and maint from the vendor that maintains that HIPPA compliance for security. But when they take advantage of the facility as in colo and bandwidth is another.

    I have worked for many hospitals through... HCA, Lifepoint, CHS and independants. I have been CFO over many hospitals and know the HIPPA compliance issues... Many of these hospitals can walk away from these high colo/bandwidth fees... and that is what I want to help them understand..
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    L.A., CA
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    3,706
    We actually had a consultant come in 2 weeks ago who is working to get us moved in on the Healthcare niche, it does seem like it has been neglected with proper influence

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Sheffield, UK
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    447
    Now we need to tackle the auto-mechanic garage niche... :p
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    6,889
    It seems the "regulation" has scared people away, but from everything I can tell, HIPAA only applies to those actually dealing with the data itself. If you're a colo and bandwidth provider, there are really no requirements for you. It seems both the health care providers and colocation facilities have an issue understanding that, which leads to various issues.
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Tampa FL
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    2,378
    I would agree this niche is not being marketed to as it should be , my girlfriend is always complaining about the inefficiency's in their setup.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    NYC
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    I have always wanted to get into the healthcare niche since my wife works for a local hospital.

    Would really like to get into it --- any ideas anyone? :-)

    Thanks
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Chicago
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    984
    In my experience dealing with the directors who call the shots, they're extremely scared of the potential legal liabilities of HIPAA and refuse to take any risks. Their take on HIPAA is its too vague and has no precedents set, thus they're committed to going above and beyond the requirements set by it - just to be safe.

    They'd rather continue with the status quo and keep all the systems managed internally than risk outsourcing anything and getting sued over it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    6,889
    Quote Originally Posted by sshepherd View Post
    They'd rather continue with the status quo and keep all the systems managed internally than risk outsourcing anything and getting sued over it.
    Yep, seems pretty accurate.
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by AnmolTech View Post
    I have always wanted to get into the healthcare niche since my wife works for a local hospital.

    Would really like to get into it --- any ideas anyone? :-)

    Thanks

    Obviously I can't push my site but that is what I am wanting to do is get these groups together and talking to one another...
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    93
    I know some IT folks in the local health care industry, and they will -not- let their gear leave their sight. The regulations are pretty strict, but it doesn't put too much of an onus on the colo provider, hence the miscommunications mentioned above.

    I think one of the big stopping blocks is the internal power-play & politics involved with moving things offsite. Where is the pocket padding when you're getting a great deal with a colo provider? More efficiency is something that a lot of IT departments, especially in regulated/medical industries, do not want.

    At least until the dollars-to-policitians ratio gets good enough.
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by sshepherd View Post
    In my experience dealing with the directors who call the shots, they're extremely scared of the potential legal liabilities of HIPAA and refuse to take any risks. Their take on HIPAA is its too vague and has no precedents set, thus they're committed to going above and beyond the requirements set by it - just to be safe.

    They'd rather continue with the status quo and keep all the systems managed internally than risk outsourcing anything and getting sued over it.

    Obviously you will have that anywhere you go. But there are more rural hospitals out there that just don't realize they have an option. When I took a one year contract and went out to a hospital in OK as CFO, as I stated one of the first things I did was to get us setup with Server Matrix. My contract is up and I am with another healthcare organization but guess where that other hospitals server is still... Server Matrix... thats right now everyone gets a cookie..
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  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Traft00 View Post
    I think one of the big stopping blocks is the internal power-play & politics involved with moving things offsite. Where is the pocket padding when you're getting a great deal with a colo provider? More efficiency is something that a lot of IT departments, especially in regulated/medical industries, do not want.

    At least until the dollars-to-policitians ratio gets good enough.

    You are still missing it... its not a power play and or politics... its ignorance! I am a healthcare executive. I have been with HCA, Lifepoint, CHS and independant hospitals as a CFO. You might think, who cares you were a CFO what does that have to do with it, well the IT department reports to the CFO in most cases.

    The way that contractuals are setup with the insurance companies, hospitals are trying to find every dollar they can to save where ever they can. It is again ignorance that they don't understand that they do not have to have their HIM vendor house their server. They can save big $$$ if they went with a colo facility on their own.

    Then you have these small hospitals that have one or NO IT personnel and a secretary changes a tape every morning and if there is an issue they have to call a local computer person to come in, or they are again throwing big money out to whoever they purchased or leased their HIM system from.
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