Healthcare Technology Featured Article

August 28, 2012

Imprivata Survey: Virtualized Desktops A Hit in Healthcare Technology

Imprivata, a provider secure access and collaboration for the healthcare market, today released the results of a new survey of 500 IT decision-makers on the adoption and use of virtual desktop technologies in healthcare, according to a statement.

The survey found that adoption of desktop virtualization in hospitals is expected to grow by 44 percent in 2013 – a rate higher than all other industries covered in the survey.

Adoption of virtualized desktops – which are stored remotely as opposed to a local server – is expected to grow by 44 percent. Even patients are charmed by virtualized desktops, a 2009 story reported, because it allows them to email, play music and create documents while they’re in the hospital, making the time pass if not a little more quickly, at least more entertainingly.

Furthermore, over 70 percent of the survey’s healthcare participants from hospitals identified thin and zero client endpoints as their chosen strategy. Thin client is a server-based computing model in which the end user's computing device has no local storage, according to Margaret Rouse. A zero client keeps the operating system and each device's specific configuration settings in flash memory. 

Other strategies being widely adopted are strong authentication (requiring two or three proofs of identity for entry) and single sign-on (entering one name and one password to log in), the survey found. Hospital IT leaders said their main reasons for deploying virtual desktops were desktop roaming across shared workstations, as well as remote access and desktop manageability.

“Virtualized desktops are particularly well suited to the highly mobile workforce in the tightly regulated healthcare industry,” said Ed Ricks, CIO at Beaufort Memorial Hospital, in the press release “Fast, secure access to personal desktops that follow users throughout their shifts, combined with the increased security and decreased maintenance that result from data never being stored on the device, have made virtualized desktops very appealing to both care providers and IT.”

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Edited by Allison Boccamazzo
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