How to Implement DevOps in the Healthcare Industry?

The healthcare industry leads in adapting to new technologies, with recent decades witnessing operational and technical evolutions. Intelligent technologies are reshaping hospital management systems, emphasizing adaptability.

Data, the cornerstone of healthcare, must be accessible and secure. DevOps in healthcare addresses this, providing a competitive edge through advantages of devops  responsiveness, data insights, and improved patient care.

DevOps has proven highly effective, embraced by healthcare IT professionals amid a rise in remote work. Patients now expect convenient digital access to healthcare services.

Our DevOps engineer at Mindbowser, Sameed Usmani, guides us in implementing DevOps in the healthcare industry.

7 Steps to Implement DevOps in Healthcare

Steps to implement DevOps

Let’s explore the essential strategies and practices healthcare organizations can adopt to integrate DevOps principles into their operations successfully.

Join us on this journey as we break down the 7 key steps to implementing DevOps in the healthcare sector, helping you navigate the unique challenges and opportunities within this critical industry.

1. Continuous Planning

The first step of implementing DevOps in healthcare is planning. In this stage, the development team plans according to the application objectives and expected user experiences. You must also examine your operational and development activities and configure them into DevOps methodology.

Moreover, you will also need to evaluate other things, like technical resources, inventory, software guidelines, human resources, security policies, and budget allocation.

It is advisable to have team meetings with all the involved team members and stakeholders to understand how the DevOps pipeline will look clearly.

2. Code Repository with Version Control

Once the planning stage is done, it’s time to ensure a version control system, which is an essential requirement for developers to coordinate and control coding.

Moreover, with version control, developers can have an offline copy of the code repository while saving every change on the main server. These changes can be tracked further for review and approval.

Tools like Git are an amazing resource to streamline the development process. This step also includes automated build stages using tools like Maven and Gradle to make the code executable.

3. Continuous Integration (CI)

In the context of healthcare application development, it is crucial to maintain a continuous integration (CI) approach. This step involves consistently merging code changes into a centralized repository before building and testing. Using CI tools is essential for efficient management while ensuring accuracy in configuration and integration.

A central CI server is pivotal in committing system changes to new code modules in the repository. This encourages cross-developmental code sharing and facilitates smooth merging, reducing potential delays.

Moreover, CI aids in automating software updates and seamlessly integrates data across different departments. The feedback loop from monitoring feeds back into the planning phase, forming the core of the DevOps lifecycle.

In this step, tools like Jenkins are used to streamline multiple actions, including rigorous testing. If the testing is successful, it proceeds to deployment, where the software receives regular and automated updates.

With CI, healthcare management systems can ensure accuracy in configuration and integration, promote efficient code management, and enjoy seamless software updates while maintaining a feedback-driven DevOps cycle.

4. Automated Build

The next step is automated builds. Automation is vital in integrated care solutions, where scripting and automated code retrieval are employed. This automation involves initiating code recovery from the source repository and compiling it into a binary artifact, facilitating periodic testing.

Specifically, it enables an integrated nursing solution by automating the retrieval of scripts and codes, ensuring they are readily available for testing and deployment.

5. Automated Release through Continuous Deployment (CD)

The automated release process, known as Continuous Deployment (CD), is a crucial step in delivering and maintaining custom medical solutions.

It involves the automated and continual delivery of software updates, ensuring that specialized healthcare solutions are regularly refreshed to meet specific medical requirements.

In this phase, software updates are distributed seamlessly, and CD guarantees that custom healthcare solutions can be released at any time through routine updates to the production environment.

This process builds upon continuous integration, where code changes undergo testing and deployment in the testing environment.

Upon successful testing, the code is deployed to the production system, adhering to company protocols. This approach ensures the swift and consistent deployment of code and product updates, promoting a streamlined and efficient development cycle for medical solutions.

6. Continuous Testing

After the deployment, the next step is continuous testing. It is an essential part of the development process, involving ongoing checks on the shared repository’s functionality.

The project proceeds to the next phase, when a test produces positive results. However, if a test fails or remains inconclusive, the system tries to identify the errors by searching its database.

The search for an error aims to determine whether the error is a known issue. In the case of a new or unfamiliar error, the system generates a report and creates an incident, which is then assigned to the development team. They utilize an incident tracker to monitor and address the issue.

Some of the most common tools used for automation testing include Gemini, Selenium, Travis CI, and others. This comprehensive approach ensures the continuous quality assessment of the software throughout its development lifecycle.

7. Constant Feedback and Monitoring

In the final and pivotal phase of DevOps deployment, continuous feedback and monitoring take center stage, ensuring sustainability in healthcare software development.

A micro-level approach is adopted to scrutinize every intricate detail, and regular feedback is gathered through self-monitoring analytics, which automates data collection.

This constant monitoring is essential to maintain healthcare software at peak performance. It involves sending real-time feedback to both development and operations teams.

In the event of any issues during the build, immediate incident reports are generated. The system also maintains analytics to track incident counts, providing a comprehensive view of software performance.

In essence, continuous monitoring is essential for sustaining the optimal operations of healthcare software development applications, emphasizing meticulous attention to detail and the proactive collection of feedback and data through automated self-monitoring.

Use Cases of DevOps in Healthcare

Now you know the application of DevOps in the healthcare industry, here we have presented some real-life scenarios of DevOps use in the industry:

1. Electronic Health Records (EHR) Management

DevOps in EHR management in healthcare
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When it comes to maintaining and updating EHR, the healthcare industry has struggled a lot! In this case, DevOps can streamline the development and deployment of EHR software, ensuring that the patient records are up-to-date and secure. These frequent updates address regulatory changes and improve usability.

2. Telemedicine and Remote Monitoring

DevOps in telemedicine and remote monitoring
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In the era of telehealth and remote patient monitoring, continuous updates and enhancements to telemedicine platforms are essential. DevOps enables rapid feature development and bug fixes, ensuring a seamless and secure experience for patients and healthcare providers.

3. Medical Device Integration

DevOps Medical device integration
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Hospitals rely on various medical devices; integrating them into the healthcare network can be complex. DevOps practices can help automate software testing and deployment for these devices, ensuring they work seamlessly and adhere to safety standards. 

4. Healthcare Mobile Apps

Implement DevOps in healthcare mobile apps
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Mobile applications for healthcare, such as appointment scheduling, medication reminders, and health tracking, need frequent updates and security patches. In this case, DevOps enables the quick rollout of new features, bug fixes, and security enhancement for improved patient experience.

5. Clinical Decision Support Systems

DevOps for healthcare in decision system
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DevOps can be highly useful in developing and maintaining clinical decision support systems (CDSS). CDSS empowers healthcare professionals with real-time patient information and treatment recommendations. Papid updates and improved algorithms can enhance patient care and safety.

6. Pharmacy Management Systems

Implementing DevOps in pharmacy management system
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Automating the deployment and updates of pharmacy management systems can help pharmacies stay compliant with changing regulations, reduce medication errors, and optimize inventory management.

7. Health Insurance and Claims Processing

DevOps in healthcare analytics
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Health insurers can use DevOps to streamline claims processing, reduce errors, and improve customer service by continuously updating and optimizing their claims processing software.

8. Healthcare Compliance and Security

DevOps practices help healthcare organizations continuously monitor and enhance their security status. Automated security scans and frequent updates can protect patient data and ensure compliance with healthcare regulations.

9. Healthcare Analytics

Healthcare organizations can leverage DevOps by rapidly deploying updates to gain insights into patient populations, improve treatment plans, and optimize resource allocation.

10. Patient Engagement Platforms

Lastly, the healthcare industry can improve patient engagement platforms that carry out surveys and feedback by rapidly deploying patient-centric features and improvements to enhance the patient experience.

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How Mindbowser Helps You Implement DevOps in the Healthcare Industry?

Implementing DevOps in the healthcare industry is a need of the hour, and Mindbowser stands as a reliable partner to guide you through this journey. We offer expert consultation based on your organization’s unique needs, challenges, and goals.

Based on the consultation, we provide customized planning to align operational and development activities. With Mindbowser’s expertise and support, your healthcare organization can effectively implement DevOps practices to enhance efficiency, security, and the quality of patient care.

Get in touch with our highly professional and dedicated team of software developers to start your dream project today!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is DevOps in healthcare?

DevOps is a methodology that promotes collaboration between Development (Dev) and Operational (Ops) teams. DevOps focuses on enhancing the efficiency, security, and quality of healthcare software and systems in the healthcare industry, ultimately leading to improved patient care and outcomes.

How do you implement DevOps in healthcare?

Implementing DevOps in healthcare involves several key steps: assessment, team collaboration, automation, setting CI/CD pipelines, security compliance, monitoring and feedback, training, and scaling.

What are the benefits of implementing DevOps in healthcare?

Benefits of DevOps in healthcare include faster software delivery, improved quality and security, reduced errors, enhanced collaboration, compliance with healthcare regulations, and better patient care.

What tools are used in the DevOps for healthcare?

The common DevOps tools used in healthcare include Jenkins, Docker, Kubernetes, Ansible, Git, and various automated testing and monitoring tools.

How does DevOps improve patient care in healthcare settings?

DevOps improves patient care by enabling healthcare organizations to deliver software updates and new features faster with few errors. This leads to more efficient healthcare processes, quicker access to medical information, and better patient experiences.

Is DevOps applicable to both healthcare providers and healthcare software vendors?

Yes, DevOps principles can be applied to healthcare providers (e.g., hospitals and clinics) to manage their internal systems and to software vendors to develop, deploy, and maintain healthcare applications.

How does DevOps make sure different healthcare systems can work together?

DevOps helps healthcare systems connect smoothly by testing and automatically updating software. This makes sure that different healthcare technologies can talk to each other without any problems.

How does Mindbowser create plans for using DevOps that fit each healthcare group's needs?

Mindbowser talks to each healthcare group to understand what they need. Then, they make a plan that fits exactly with what each group wants and helps them use DevOps in the best way.

Can DevOps work with new technologies like blockchain and AI in healthcare?

Yes, DevOps can easily work with new technologies like blockchain and AI in healthcare. It helps healthcare groups use these new technologies quickly and without any issues.

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