Tag: Cloud as a Service

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Reimagining Healthcare with Azure IoT

Providers, payors, pharmaceuticals, and life sciences companies are leading the next wave of healthcare innovation by utilizing connected devices. From continuous patient monitoring, to optimizing operations for manufacturers and cold-chain supply tracking for the pharmaceutical industry, the healthcare industry has embraced IoT technology to improve patient outcomes and operations.

In our latest IoT Signals for Healthcare research, we spoke with over 150 health organizations about the role that IoT will play in helping them deliver better health outcomes in the years to come. Across the ecosystem, 85 percent see IoT as “critical” to their success, with 78 percent planning to increase their investment in IoT technologies over the next few years. Real-time data from connected devices and sensors provides benefits across the health ecosystem, from manufacturers and pharmaceuticals to health providers and patients.

For health providers, IoT unlocks efficiencies for clinical staff and equipment:

  • Reduces human error.
  • Ensures regulatory compliance when exchanging patient health data across systems.
  • Coordinates the productivity of medical professionals across clinical facilities.

For manufacturers, IoT creates new digital feedback loops connecting their employees, facilities, products, and end customers. Real-time data can help:

  • Reduce costly downtime with predictive maintenance.
  • Improve sustainable practices by reducing waste and ensuring worker safety.
  • Contribute to improved product quality and quantity.

For the pharmaceutical industry, IoT provides greater traceability for inventory along a supply chain:

  • Improved visibility into environmental conditions.
  • Reduced costly inventory spoilage.
  • Increased control against theft or counterfeiting.

For end patients, IoT can improve health outcomes with continuous patient monitoring:

  • Reduces the need for unnecessary readmissions.
  • Improves treatment success rates by providing continuous data to care professionals.
  • Personalizes care based on patient needs.

In this blog, we’ll cover how our portfolio can support different IoT solution needs for software developers, hardware developers, and healthcare customers.

Building healthcare IoT solutions with Azure IoT

As Microsoft and its global partners continue to build solutions that empower healthcare organizations around the world, a key question continues to face IoT decision makers: whether to build a solution from scratch or buy an existing solution that fits their needs.

From ensuring device-to-cloud security with Azure Sphere to providing multiple approaches for device management and connectivity with Platform as a Service (PaaS) options or a managed app platform, Azure IoT provides the most comprehensive IoT and Edge product portfolio on the market, designed to meet the diverse needs of healthcare solution builders.

Solution builders who want to invest their resources in designing, maintaining, and customizing IoT systems from the ground up can do so with our growing portfolio of IoT platform services, leveraging Azure IoT Hub as a starting point.

While this approach may be tempting for many, often solution builders struggle when growing their pilot into a globally scalable IoT solution. This process introduces significant complexity to an IoT architecture, requiring expertise across cloud and device security, DevOps, compliance, and more. For this reason, many solution builders might be better suited for starting with a managed platform approach with Azure IoT Central. Using more than two dozen Azure services, Azure IoT Central is designed to continually evolve with the latest service updates and seamlessly accompany solution builders along their IoT journey from pilot to production. With predictable pricing, white labeling, healthcare-specific application templates, and extensibility, solution builders can focus their time on how their device insights can improve outcomes, instead of common infrastructure questions like ingesting device data or ensuring disaster recovery.

New tools to accelerate building a healthcare IoT solution

Over the past year, we’ve been working hard to create new tools to make IoT solution development easier for our healthcare partners and customers:

  • Azure IoT Central app templates.
  • Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resource (FHIR) Connector for Azure.

To help you put all of these tools together, we’ve also published a reference architecture diagram for continuous patient monitoring solutions.

Continuous patient monitoring reference architecture

Azure IoT Central Continuous Patient Monitoring App Template Reference Architecture

IoMT FHIR Connector for Azure

Interoperability continues to be a huge challenge and critical for most healthcare organizations looking to use healthcare data in innovative ways. Microsoft proudly announced the general availability of our own FHIR server offering, Azure API for FHIR, in October 2019. We are now further enriching the FHIR ecosystem with the IoMT FHIR Connector for Azure, a connector designed to ingest, transform, and store IoT protected health information (PHI) data in FHIR compatible format.

Innovative healthcare companies share their IoT stories

In addition to rich industry insights like those found in IoT Signals for Healthcare and our previously published stories from StrykerGojo, and Wipro, we are releasing two new case stories. They detail the decisions, trade-offs, processes, and results of top healthcare organizations investing in IoT solutions, as well as the healthcare solution builders supporting them. These case studies showcase different approaches to building an IoT solution, based on the unique needs of their business. Read more about how these companies are implementing and winning with their IoT investments.

ThoughtWire and Schneider Electric leverage IoT for hospital operations

Clinical environments are managed by traditionally disconnected systems (facility management, clinical operations, inventory management, and more), operated by entirely separate teams. This makes it difficult to holistically manage and optimize clinical operations. Schneider Electric, a global expert in facilities management, partnered with ThoughtWire, a specialist in operations management systems, to deliver an end-to-end solution for facilities and clinical operations management. The joint Smart Hospital solution uses Azure’s IoT platform to help hospitals and clinics reduce costs, minimize their carbon footprint, and promote better staff satisfaction, patient experiences and health outcomes.

“We don’t just want to understand how the facility operates, we want to understand how patients and clinical staff interact with that infrastructure,” says Chris Roberts, Healthcare Solution Architect at Schneider Electric. “That includes everything to do with patient experience and patient safety. And when you talk about those things, the clinical world and the infrastructure world start to merge and connect. Working with ThoughtWire, we bridge the gap between those two worlds and drive performance improvements.”

To learn more, read the case study here.

Sensoria Health creates a new gold standard for managing diabetic foot ulcers

Diabetic Foot Ulcers (DFUs) are the leading cause of hospitalizations for diabetics, with a notoriously high treatment failure rate (over 75 percent), and an annual cost of $40 billion globally. To improve treatment success, Sensoria partnered with leading diabetic foot boot manufacturer, Optima Molliter, to create the Motus Smart Solution. The solution enables clinicians to remotely monitor patients wearing removable offloading devices (casts) when they leave the clinic and to track patient compliance against recommended care plans, enabling more personalized–and more impactful–care.

Sensoria turned to Azure IoT Central to develop a solution that would handle device management at scale while ensuring compliance in storing and sharing patient data. They leveraged the Continuous Patient Monitoring app template as their starting point to quickly design, launch, and scale their solution. With native IoMT Connector for FHIR integration, the template ensures that patient data is ultimately stored and shared in a secure and compliant format.

As stated by Davide Vigano, Cofounder and CEO of Sensoria, “We needed to quickly build enterprise-class applications for both doctors and patients to use with the device, send data from the device in a way that would help people remain compliant with HIPAA and other similar privacy-related legislation around the world, and find a way for the device’s data to easily flow from clinician to clinician across the very siloed healthcare industry. Using Azure IoT Central helped us deliver on all those requirements in a very short period of time.”

To learn more, read the case study here.

Figure 2: Sensoria Health Motus Smart integration with Azure IoT Central and the Azure API for FHIR.

We look forward to seeing healthcare organizations continue to innovate with IoT to drive better health outcomes. We’ll continue to build the tools and platforms to empower our partners to invent with purpose.

 

Note: Blog Sourec – Microsoft Azure Official : https://azure.microsoft.com/en-in/blog/

Microsoft Azure Cloud Services

Why Microsoft Azure became Most Secured & Reliable Cloud Platform

In a recent survey, according to 28 percent of surveyed, Microsoft Azure was recognized as the most-used cloud platform, and the one most commonly to be bought or renewed— the largest percentage for any cloud computing provider. With results like this, it’s no surprise the number of businesses deeply invested in Azure keeps climbing.
If you are searching for more details about Azure, including how your business could profit from it and make the best use of its services, you are in the correct place. This comprehensive guide covers the basics and beyond, from “What is Microsoft Azure?

 How Microsoft Azure is different??

Whenever anyone questioned what Microsoft Azure is, the simplest explanation is this: Azure is a cloud computing system that can deliver everything that industry needs to digitally manage all or part of its computer processes — such as servers, storage, databases, networking, analytics and much more.

The only available option to organizations has generally been to create and run the specific hardware required for computation, comprising servers, disk storage, and Ethernet switches. However now, businesses can use a public cloud computing platform like Azure that buys and manages all of the equipment in computation. This means businesses can “lease” hardware resources efficiently, as required.

You can select and choose between Azure’s offerings to get the help you need to develop, deliver and manage software for your business processes. And since you’re leasing cloud infrastructure, you don’t have the expenses and shortfalls (like a dedicated IT department) involved with the actual infrastructure that goes with those operations. There are also many advantages above the cost and efficiency we will discuss further.

Today, many businesses choose to use a mix of cloud services and on-premise data centres. Some even using different cloud services platforms, based on their needs and concerns. So, don’t worry if you’re interested in making a drastic change to your computer environment or think like you’re lifelong committing to a single business supplier. You’ll want to concentrate rather on deciding the feasibility of cloud technology in parallel to the requirements of your business. Often the simplest way to get the process started is to build a hybrid of the cloud with an established on-premises system.

 Who makes use of Microsoft Azure adequately?

Firms of all scales take interest in the use of the public cloud platform and many prefer Microsoft Azure. In practice, 85 percent of Fortune 500 businesses are using Azure.

Azure appeals to several SMBs enterprises, too. One possible explanation behind this is that it enables SMBs to prevent the large expenditure of resources for facilities; it also eliminates the strain of improvements and maintenance, since they may not have readily available in-house experts to assist. And also because Azure makes it much easier to dynamically resize computing resources in moments, it gives greater versatility that enterprises simply would not have with a conventional on-premise cloud platform.

Microsoft Azure Storage

If you do cloud hosting, your information will not be processed on your servers anymore. Where exactly is it kept, then?

Microsoft intends Azure users ‘ physical data backups, meaning it will be placed at one or more of Microsoft’s 100 + data centres across the world. You can generally determine the country you would like to deposit your information in. Generally speaking, it is suggested that your information be placed near where your customers are. The further away from your consumers, your information is stored, the more connectivity issues they will encounter. Azure will hold and run multiple duplicates of your information, using the process known replication, to ensure that your data is easily accessible. You can choose how to manage duplication — for instance, do you want two duplicates at the same area, or multiple versions processed across multiple locations?

Security Standards of Microsoft Azure

All major public cloud services, especially Microsoft Azure, have priority over security. With the latest expansion of its Azure Security Center, Microsoft has been particularly concentrated on this topic with a total focus.

Azure Security Center is a monitoring tool that helps you to track security flaws and attacks to your Azure assets. This allows identify potentially malicious behavior throughout the hybrid cloud workloads using advanced analytics and suggests alternative remediation measures. Then you can assess those actions and take appropriate steps.

Data Encryption at Rest is also provided by Azure, which is the cryptographic encoding of data when it persists. This uses an encryption algorithm for swift encryption and decryption of vast amounts of data.

Now that Microsoft Azure has been implemented, we will shift on to the next phase — recognizing what Azure can do for you and your industry.

There are various reasons, in my experience, why businesses end up making the move of having Microsoft Azure. Azure has so many functionalities that describing all of them in a single blog post will be practically impossible. Below are six functionalities most important to many enterprises.

1) Disaster Recovery 

With Azure, your business gains a strong disaster recovery solution—one that also comes with a more affordable price tag than those associated with traditional computing environments. With Azure, you get access to:

  • Various data storage data centers that enable you to distribute a cloud service to various places around the world.
  • Azure Site Recovery, a service that helps guarantee that your critical business systems remain online by duplicating certain tasks from a host site to a secondary location during an interruption or disturbance.
  • Azure Traffic Manager, which in case of an area-specific failure streamlines traffic routing to multiple locations (determined by the user)
  • 3x Replication of information, ensuring all information you hold in Azure is replicated three stages, either to a single data center or to a second one.

2) Flexibility  

The extra capacity to allow high volume tasks needs to be developed into the device. This is particularly true for an on-premise data center that involves purchasing and managing a lot of extra hardware year-round. You can instantly increase your industrial base with the cloud, and then reduce it easily when you’re finished. Besides, you just charge for the services that you want and don’t waste money when they aren’t being utilized.

Azure has built-in-tools to track and evaluate your use of cloud services which can help you identify advantages from reducing or changing your computing environment.

3) Development Tools 

Azure is the perfect place for development! Since you’re only paying for the resources you need (known as utility computing), developers can easily build out all possible scenarios and run through testing without having to purchase new equipment. On top of that, developers gain immediate access to a variety of templates, services, and solutions, helping reduce the time it takes to bring innovations to the market.

Azure DevOps characteristics include:

  • Microsoft’s Visual Studio Team Services (free for up to five users), which is a collection of support that assist development team collaboration. This feature allows teams, among other things, to coordinate work objects and control source code.
  • Other conventional DevOps tools are easily integrated like Jenkins, Chef, Terraform, and Ansible.

4) Cost Efficiency 

One of Azure’s (or any public cloud platform) greatest benefits is its cost-efficiency. There are three main reasons why Azure is so feasible in cost terms:

  • You won’t be making the high initial expenditure associated with maintaining an on-premise data center. Cloud computing often reduces the need to buy additional production tools or increased downstream tasks. You won’t need to buy new equipment (since most computer hardware has an overall lifespan of two or three years).
  • You will eliminate the expenses of service calls and warranty renewals.

5) Easy Access to Resources 

Azure’s cloud computing service provides IT departments with exposure to an enormous number of resources they wouldn’t normally have with a data center on-premises. For example, many big firms aim to extend machine learning and automation to their analytics so that smart decision-making is possible

Take a glance for those characteristics of Azure to enhance your enterprise agility:

  • Azure Quick start Templates assist you to use numbers of Azure resources swiftly and consistently.
  • Azure Marketplace, the app store of Azure’s data centre applications, makes it easy to discover, analyse and deploy any cloud software you need. The Marketplace is one of my favorite parts of Azure because it’s easy to operate and has so many software options.
  • Azure Machine Learning Services and Azure AI Platform help you build artificial intelligence applications.And if you have any questions or you want fare quotation then we are just one click away, don’t hesitate to get in touch
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Are you managing your IoT devices’ software in the right way?

Enterprises today are part of a new world: a software-driven world. And while this new world has brought many great innovations, it is also forcing organizations in all industries to rethink their software development practices, to deliver new features and offerings faster. Those entities that will embrace and incorporate change most effectively, will be the winners. In a world where industry disruptors set new market conditions, new standards for product delivery and customer satisfaction, industry incumbents are faced with two options: either continue using their existing approaches and tools, with the risk of lagging behind the competition, or adapt to the “new normal” and deliver products and applications faster, with less resources.

As it pertains to the “new normal” DevOps standards, organizations now face many challenges such as cost overruns, software development projects that don’t scale in line with the enterprise growth, and increased market demands for speed. On top of that, the available outdated testing tools don’t offer visibility to ensure the right specifications get tested in the right time.

Lean and agile principles

So, how can you make sure your organization is ready to manage unexpected changes, and deal with any dependencies that you already have under the hood? How do you ensure a strong balance between the existing business and the new development? Many of you may already be familiar with lean and agile principles and have probably even tried applying them in smaller teams. But what we’ve seen so far in the market is that many of you struggle to apply these principles across the entire organization.

Lean and agile principles can help you reach your goals in today’s hyper-competitive world of digital product delivery. By becoming a lean and agile enterprise your organization will be able to adapt faster to the needs of the market by improving internal collaboration and communication. You will be able to learn in real-time from your clients to ensure that you are producing the prioritized set of features that drive economic value. By managing test labs, test planning, and ensuring the tight linkage between product demand and delivery, your organization will be able to reduce waste (time, effort, resources), while ensuring that your business strategy is aligned with the investment and development goals.

Client successes

Let’s have a look at a few examples of what some of the industry leaders have achieved, using lean and agile processes.

  • 50 percent reduction in time to market because of increased efficiency.
  • 80 percent reduction and software defects through earlier testing and easier detection of discrepancies.
  • 50 percent decrease in user time to acceptance of software releases.
  • 57 percent development cost reduction.

Nationwide achieved 50 percent improvement in code quality and 70 percent reduction in system downtime by applying lean principles to transform the software delivery lifecycle. Diagnostic Grifols, a world-leading healthcare enterprise headquartered in Barcelona Spain, increased the efficiency of development documentation by 30 percent—facilitating compliance, ensuring consistency of records across all product lines, and reducing operational costs.

 

Are you managing your IoT devices' software in the right way? Experience the benefits of collaboration and agile development.

 Photo: Experience the benefits of collaboration and agile development

Time to transform

It’s time to transform your organization into a lean and agile enterprise. It’s time to ensure that your firm can adjust to any market change, predict the unpredictable, keep costs low, deliver new features and offerings faster, and never lose a beat with your customers.

If you would like to learn more, let’s get connected! Our IBM solution enables companies to improve visibility and transparency across the product delivery lifecycle by providing a single source of truth. It also enables enterprises to define a process custom to each organization, and it ensures quality and compliance. All using lean and agile processes.