Originally posted on http://www.vmware.com by Rob Sherry

Every healthcare organization, including those that are a part of the federal sector — is feeling the heat from a growing trend called the consumerization of healthcare.

Some call this phenomenon the Amazon Effect, but it’s a force more significant than any one company. Consumerization is the logical outcome from everyone — including doctors and other healthcare providers — being able to quickly order a seemingly endless variety of products and services using just an app or website.

Doctors and patients are demanding modern apps to deliver better service and patient outcomes. Providers want access to any application across any device from any cloud. Federal sector healthcare professionals know their mission goes beyond the Hippocratic Oath. Those in the VA, for example, believe veterans have earned the right to receive the best healthcare experience possible from their country.

Delivering modern medicine depends upon a foundation of modern apps and infrastructure. But developing and deploying modernizing applications at the federal scale is never easy: These organizations are enormous, with hundreds of applications and millions of consumers.

Behind these federal healthcare organizations are decades of work supporting the public good. Those many decades also mean these organizations have a complex IT landscape that’s not easy to navigate.

And there’s still more: Added to this mountain of difficulty is the additional burden of a global pandemic.

Ballooning Demands and Technical Debt

Before COVID-19 federal healthcare, IT professionals were already struggling with technical debt. Suddenly, these federal healthcare organizations faced spiking patient volumes and the requirement for contactless operations.

Patients, including those not directly affected by the virus, still require treatment and face-to-face consultations with a provider — this brought about an immediate demand for virtual care options, such as telehealth. Complicating matters further, many employees such as radiologists (and the IT workers themselves) had to work from home. These and other staff must have secure, reliable access to online digital systems.

An already stressed digital infrastructure suddenly faced ballooning demands. According to an MIT Technology Review study, just under 80 percent of healthcare leaders say COVID-19 has been a force accelerator in digital transformation.

How VMware Can Help

VMware delivers the solutions federal healthcare organizations require toallow their organizations to meet their consumers where their consumers are.  VMware helps federal healthcare organizations to complete the journey from cloud first to cloud smartby helping themadopt a multi-cloud strategy to give them the flexibility they need, whether it’s in the cloud or on-prem. Organizations can create their own cloud model to meet FedRAMP and mission requirements built out with VMware Cloud, whether that is AWS, Azure, Oracle, or modernizing on-prem to deliver a cloud-like user experience.  VMware also enables customers to build modern apps and get more out of their legacy applications; whether that is driving cost out of the infrastructure on the existing apps , moving existing apps to cloud infrastructure, migrating into containers, or creating cloud-native applications.  All of these approaches enable a better consumer experience and each Fed Health organization is at different stages of their respective cloud and modern application journeys.

To ensure security is at the forefront, VMware’s Carbon Black professional services teams work hand in hand with the federal agencies to deliver the capabilities they need to minimize risk and prevent attacks from the most sophisticated threat actors in the world. Finally, VMware provides a work from anywhere set of capabilities to support federal agencies’ missions in this ever-changing environment.

Federal healthcare is making great strides as it looks to become the preferred healthcare option for Veterans, service members, and consumers who receive the myriad of Federal Health benefits and services of the future. To continue to deliver that great customer experience, federal healthcare must go beyond its traditional IT boundaries and VMware makes that possible.

Interested in learning more about the how VMware can support IT initiatives in the healthcare space? Check out my this customer video with Sentara Healthcare and their journey in transforming operations amidst COVID-19.

Jens Koegler

Jens Koegler is VMware's Healthcare Industry Director in EMEA. He is helping our healthcare customers develop and run modern applications to drive innovation and ensure better patient care through a digital foundation that includes data center, hybrid cloud, mobile, networking and security technologies. VMware plays a strategic role in the healthcare industry. Its leading innovations in enterprise software help ensure consistent patient care and reduce IT access time for healthcare professionals so they can spend more time with their patients. Jens plays a key role in helping customers understand how new applications, devices, the latest IT technologies and digital transformation are driving innovation in healthcare.