March 12, 2019

Should I Build or Buy Compliance and Integrations in 2019?

Laleh Hassibi

Vice President of Marketing

Our goal in building the Datica Portfolio of products was to reduce the barriers of compliance in the cloud for makers of digital health products. We believe it should be as simple to deploy a healthcare application that handles and shares PHI in the cloud as it is a less-regulated consumer application. It is our ongoing commitment to simplify healthcare’s onramp to the cloud that enables our customers to focus their efforts away from compliance and the work to integrate with EHRs, and toward developing digital health applications that improve patient outcomes and move healthcare forward in this digital age.

There’s much to know about both cloud compliance and EHR integration and that knowledge requires a significant investment in time, education, personnel, and money. With that in mind, we updated our very popular Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) guides for 2019. The intent of these guides is to help makers of digital health products make informed decisions about whether to “build” cloud compliance or EHR integrations themselves, or “buy” it in the form of one of Datica’s products. In the pages of these revised guides, we lay out a framework and cost estimates to give you a better understanding of the total cost of building and maintaining this technology yourself. Here’s what you’ll learn in each guide.

The TCO of Cloud Compliance

Compliance matters because it establishes the credibility of your product within the industry. In healthcare, data is an increasingly large risk vector for enterprises so they need assurances on the cloud in order to feel comfortable sending their data to the cloud. Without proof of it, digital health products will never get a foot in the door. Satisfying compliance without sacrificing the benefits of the cloud is how you get to market faster while reducing costs.

We were dying to use the cloud but were really stuck: We knew we wanted to use Amazon Web Services (AWS) but there were all these things we couldn’t do to make that work, like HIPAA compliant DevOps, HITRUST, and infrastructure security. Datica puts us in the situation where we can get back to our core competency because they handle everything we need to be able to use AWS.” - David Deas, Corporate Director, Innovation and Knowledge Analytics, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare

Building compliance in the cloud yourself, and providing the necessary and continual proof of compliance, is an expensive effort that requires a specialized skill set. In the TCO guide of Cloud Compliance, you’ll learn that building it yourself will cost you an estimated $282,500 initially, and an additional $187,000 annually. Read the guide to understand how that breaks down into the detailed costs to design, implement, monitor, and prove compliance.

Datica was designed from the ground up to be the cloud enablement layer for all healthcare applications. The Datica portfolio of compliance products enables you to focus on building and securing your application by managing all compliance and security obligations on and in the cloud.

The TCO of Healthcare Integrations

The choice between deploying and managing an integration engine on your own and choosing a managed integration as a service solution is not an easy one. For those with existing on-premise workloads, moving to the cloud has its challenges. For those who choose to tackle an integration independently, the costs laid out in this 2019 TCO guide of EHR Integrations are fair and accurate and can be used to guide total cost of ownership calculations.

We calculated a total cost of $229,000 initially and an additional $141,000 annually to build each EHR integration. We derived these costs through years of work and hundreds of integrations across some of the largest health systems in the nation. The new TCO guide breaks down in great detail the myriad factors that go into the cost to design, implement, deploy, and prove compliance for each EHR integration you will undertake.

In terms of hours, I’d say that the effort Datica put in saved our company more than 150 person-hours.” - Derek Rockwell Director of Engineering, Zipnosis

Datica is a team of healthcare veterans including former executives and team members from Epic. We have conducted hundreds of integrations across hundreds of sites, and exchange millions of messages per day through a combination of products and services. Regardless of the approach you take, be prepared for more EHR integrations. We have seen the market tip in terms of willingness to do EHR integrations that were roadblocked even a few years ago. With more and more integrations, the demand for talent is only going to grow and the resource demands on the health system side are going be an even worse bottleneck.

Healthcare integration projects can have many hidden pitfalls and unexpected challenges. Datica’s integration products and expertise can help your team visualize the way forward, refine project scope, and bring our deep knowledge of health systems to bear by making our experts available to help you work with all the players involved.

tag integration HL7 Compliance HITRUST Healthcare Cloud Cloud Computing

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