Are you a facility owner considering the different options available in the Electronic Health Record System space? If that’s the case, you have probably heard or seen the term “SaaS” and “Hosted” to refer to different ways of licensing EHR products. These terms are always used interchangeably, and that should not be the case. If you have heard these terms from your vendors, then you need to understand the difference.
What is SaaS?
SaaS is defined as software as a service. It is a way to deliver software to end-users who do not want the task of maintaining and running the software by themselves. SaaS systems are found on servers maintained and operated by a vendor in a data center. The software occasionally has limited options for customization and is always shared by multiple customers.
A hosted EHR solution is a different kind of tool. By having an agreement to use a hosted solution, you will be asking a vendor to set up physical infrastructure with customized services designed for you. Hosting can be done in a data center that shares space with other hosted solutions; however, the application will only be used by you as a healthcare practice.
Use of Emails to Illustrate the Differences Between Running a Client-Server Software Using Hosted Software and SaaS
“Exchange,” a Microsoft client-server-based application, was the first widely used email program. To sufficiently run Exchange, you were to have servers running the software in your office and having one person responsible for maintaining it. The person would also ensure the program is available to the desktop computers of clients in the office. The exchange was so much complicated that it needed your attention to keep it running.
The exchange began to dominate the world of corporate email, and this led to popping up of firms that could host Exchange servers for individuals. Hosted exchange services could provide you with your Exchange server, which you could connect to using the internet. You would connect to the exchange server as usual, but the difference is that you were no longer in your office.
Emergence and Advantages of SaaS
Software as a Service (SaaS) emerged as an excellent software for emails. When you use Gmail, you are not running it on your own Gmail server; you are sharing Google’s varieties of servers running the Gmail software with millions of users as an application of SaaS. For the healthcare professionals who have realized that such information technology (“IT”) services may not be competent enough, either Hosted EHR or SaaS may be the viable remedy.
Depending on the specific attributes of your healthcare organization or facility SaaS or Hosted EHR may be the better alternative to meet your needs. Experts say industry players like DarioHealth Corp. (NASDAQ: DRIO) may have tried both options and finally zeroed down on what is best suited for their operations.
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