Role of IT in Biomedical Device Management Integration Outlined by Info-Tech Research Group

Tue May 14 2024By KennedyKrieg

As healthcare continues its rapid digital transformation, the need to integrate biomedical device management with IT infrastructure is becoming increasingly crucial. This digital shift, while improving efficiency and patient care, also exposes the sector to heightened cybersecurity threats. Recent incidents and news headlines have exposed some of the vulnerabilities in connected medical devices, making the case for holistic integration strategies more pressing. Info-Tech Research Group’s latest research, Integrate Biomedical Device Management With IT, addresses these challenges, offering health care organizations a proactive approach to safeguard and streamline patient data, ensuring both safety and operational efficiency.

Info-Tech’s research highlights the significant risks associated with seemingly minor processes in healthcare operations. Functions like asset management, configuration management, and support have become critical components for maintaining health services with minimal room for error.

“The network effects associated with connected platforms make medical device security a pressing issue,” explains Auma-Ebanyat. “In most hospitals, biomedical device management oversight sits under facilities management and is not integrated with the organization’s IT department, which limits the capability for effective visibility and security monitoring of these devices.”

The healthcare industry frequently encounters challenges arising from the lack of proper asset and configuration management tracking systems. These systems and databases are crucial for effectively monitoring and managing the complex landscape of biomedical devices. To attain the necessary maturity and proficiency in comprehensive biomedical device management, Info-Tech advises that a cohesive approach involving coordination, strategic planning, and leadership alignment across the organization is imperative.

“The convergence of biomedical device management with IT is a growing trend in healthcare organizations and the most viable solution to achieve the needed level of maturity and capability for end-to-end biomedical device management,” adds Auma-Ebanyat. “Coordination and planning across the organization and its leadership is required to obtain stakeholder buy-in and support. It is important to understand the current state of biomedical device management, trends, connected device vulnerabilities, and benefits of integrating with IT.”

The firm’s new blueprint stresses the need for IT leaders to understand the landscape of biomedical device management, including emerging trends, vulnerabilities in connected devices, and the advantages of aligning with IT. By integrating biomedical device management with IT infrastructure, healthcare organizations can bolster efficiency, elevate patient safety, optimize resource allocation, and fortify data security.

In the resource, Info-Tech outlines the following four-phase framework to help healthcare organizations develop integrated biomedical device management programs:

Phase 1: Create the Program Vision: Define program goals, guiding principles, and distinctive attributes that will steer the integration process.

Phase 2: Conduct a Current State Analysis: Conduct a current state analysis of the department, looking at current staffing, workflows, policies in place, inventory management, and the overall lifecycle management of the biomedical device department.

Phase 3: Define the Future State: Facilitate sessions to define program governance and capture in the governance model. This includes the staffing model and staffing requirements, program gaps and how they will be managed, and the required changes to the workflow.

Phase 4: Design the Biomedical Device Management Program Roadmap: Identify tasks, dependencies, and risks before developing a robust risk management plan for smooth program execution.

The firm also examines the transformative potential of advancements in sensor technology and connectivity solutions. These advancements are democratizing access to more sophisticated and affordable medical devices, thereby making the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) increasingly accessible to both healthcare providers and patients alike.

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