By running its analytics services on the Windows Azure cloud platform, McKesson is simplifying development and deployment while providing a flexible, highly secure healthcare analytics solution that meets the needs of diverse healthcare organizations.
“We’re definitely excited by all the different capabilities with Windows Azure,” says Adams. “It would have taken considerable effort to write certain features on our own. But because the Microsoft cloud platform already includes tools like Windows Azure Active Directory, which is available for free, we can focus more on developing our own applications.”
Faster Deployment and Increased Scalability
McKesson can bring new customers on board faster with confidence that the solution will scale as needed. The company reports that it can seamlessly connect the on-premises environment, including Active Directory Domain Services and EHR systems, with the Windows Azure cloud. “Because we’re on an elastic cloud with Windows Azure, we don’t have to worry about setting up infrastructure or whether we can sustain growth with the current capacity in our data centers, says Sujatha Bayyapureddy, Enterprise Architect at McKesson. “So it’s possible to get customers up and running within a much shorter time frame than we could accomplish with our on-premises systems.”
More Flexibility and Better Security
By deploying in the Microsoft cloud and implementing single sign-on, McKesson will be able to serve its customers’ needs securely and efficiently. Windows Azure also provides security that meets the needs of diverse organizations. “In the healthcare space, attribute-based access to applications and data is particularly critical,” says Adams. “The Windows Azure Active Directory Graph API gives us the tools we need to provide single-sign-on capability across multiple applications.”
The flexibility also helps McKesson appeal to a broader range of customers, from small practices to large hospital systems.
Bayyapureddy says, “Our healthcare analytics solutions are a good fit for the cloud because it’s easier for hospitals to process large amounts of data. But we are also looking at using Windows Azure for other solutions in order to benefit customers that have smaller IT divisions.”