Laboratories should have a Cloud computing strategy. While security risks kept some laboratories from moving their IT infrastructure to the Cloud, it is clearer now that enterprise security protections in Cloud environments can greatly exceed a laboratory’s own on-premise security capabilities. Security experts would agree that the biggest security risk to your organisation’s information technology is in fact your employees and that computing in the Cloud can pose less risk than keeping IT on-premises. Still, there are many considerations for laboratory information systems in the Cloud.
As of 2019, Statista reported that 55% of US businesses and organizations stored data in the Cloud, much of which was sensitive or classified in nature (Statista). Just a couple of years later, in large part due to work shifting from in-office to remote during the global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, 61% of US businesses had migrated a majority of the workload to the Cloud by 2022, and now an astounding 94% of businesses are utilizing at least some Cloud-based services. Despite any initial reluctance, 80% of businesses report operational improvement since moving to the Cloud.
Benefits of laboratory computing in the Cloud
Laboratories can benefits from Cloud computing just as much as companies in other industries. From a resources perspective, for example, Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions can enable laboratories to quickly scale computing assets up or down without the typical limitations of skilled human resources and time, as well as capital cost and maintenance of physical IT infrastructure. In Cloud-hosted environments, the onus for keeping hardware and software current and operational shifts to the provider.
In addition, Cloud hosting offers the latest security protocols and data redundancy for the best available security and backup solutions with minimal management and maintenance by your laboratory’s internal IT resources. The Cloud can help “future-proof” your laboratory, providing near-limitless solutions to availability, scalability, flexibility, extensibility, redundancy, and security of your laboratory’s information management systems and data.
From an innovation perspective, the Cloud also opens the door to sharing and analysis of laboratory data. The Cloud’s collective computing capacity opens up possibilities, especially in science, to share, consolidate, and analyze data using artificial intelligence (AI) and to apply machine learning (ML) principles for predictive analytics, for example. Such capabilities would typically require more computing and informatics sophistication than an individual laboratory can handle.
Cloud is the infrastructure for “Big Data”
By its very nature, Cloud computing affords the IT infrastructure required for “Big Data.” Datasets that would otherwise be far too large and potentially costly to store, query, view, or analyze on standard computers become more accessible via the Cloud. LIS or LIMS data that might otherwise have stayed siloed or locked in unstructured data lakes can now be shared, accessed, selectively mined, and used in real time by academics, researchers, and scientists, for example. We at Clinisys believe this data science is the future of laboratory informatics.
Laboratory test results over time have enormous potential to help researchers find relevant and statistically significant correlations between environmental factors in air, water, wastewater, soil, and food and human disease. Using laboratory data, scientists can also learn more about the relationships between human and animal genetics and disease. AI and predictive analytics will necessarily progress genetics research and applications for precision medicine.
The Laboratory Cloud Solution
Clinisys Platform™ offers laboratories the laboratory diagnostic informatics solutions to compete in any industry. Built for the Cloud, Clinisys Platform gives clients the functionality of both a laboratory information system (LIS) and a laboratory information management system (LIMS), unencumbered by scope and scale. Plus, clients can extend the platform to include records and historical data, turning static data into analysis.
Clinisys is the largest laboratory informatics software partner in the world. Our intelligent solutions and expertise are designed to refine the modern laboratory for more efficient collection, testing, analysis, and reporting of data. All built upon the Clinisys Platform, our solutions help you bring together data for complex data integrations and deep analytics.
Interested in learning more about our Cloud solutions for your lab? Let’s start the conversation.