Healthcare Sector Turns to Database DevOps to Better Serve Patients Remotely

Redgate Software research uncovers new trends emerging in the healthcare sector in response to the pandemic, and to ensure compliance protocols are met

CAMBRIDGE, England–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Results from Redgate’s latest 2020 State of Database DevOps Report for the Healthcare sector indicate rising demand and adoption of DevOps and database DevOps to address the numerous challenges that the sector is facing this year, partly stemming from the coronavirus.

As IT teams across the country struggle with smaller budgets and staffing shortages, every industry has seen a rising demand for standardized process and automation to quickly address pressing needs. In the healthcare sector, the pandemic has forced IT to work under pressure to quickly develop and deliver effective telehealth services, while also facilitating access to electronic health records and other sensitive patient data to ensure these all run smoothly. This increased strain has increased the need for DevOps and database DevOps processes, with 41% of respondents in the healthcare sector saying they have adopted DevOps across some projects to free up developer time and increase the speed of delivery.

“We know that the healthcare sector is facing unprecedented demands from the pandemic and other regulatory struggles, and DevOps is the best way to tackle these issues,” said Kendra Little, Redgate DevOps Advocate. “By then extending those practices into the database, the healthcare sector can not only improve the quality and efficiency of these systems, but ensure patient data remains secure and maintain compliance practices.”

Key findings for the healthcare sector include:

Database DevOps Adoption is Rising: 70% of respondents have adopted DevOps across all or some projects, or have a Proof of Concept in place, compared to 68% across all sectors. Notably, 41% have moved beyond the PoC stage, compared to 36% across other sectors like government or financial services.
An Automation Frontrunner: The healthcare sector is ahead of others in adopting automation across the database development process. The top three reasons for adoption are to free up developer time (27%), increase speed of delivery (22%) and reduce the risk of data loss (13%), which seems to imply that improving development quality to meet the needs of critical services and compliance is playing a larger role.
A Steady Move to the Cloud: Like other industries, the healthcare sector is making its way to the cloud with 42% saying they are using the cloud in some way. However, this number is sure to increase as more adopt DevOps processes and quarantine restrictions mean an increase in remote medical services.
Ensuring Compliance is Key: 58% of respondents say that they have version control measures for database code in place, which enables automated builds and deployments. Version control can serve as a key component for compliance because it’s the foundation for ensuring development processes are both reliable and repeatable, while removing common human errors.
Database Deployments on the Rise: There’s a significant jump in the frequency of database deployments for 2020, with 51% in healthcare saying they deploy changes daily or weekly.
“What’s surprising this year is the way North American respondents are surging ahead, with 55% saying that they deploy database changes daily, weekly or even on demand,” said Little. “This indicates that they’re embracing Agile practices to better meet the needs of doctors, patients and remote services like telehealth that rely on these databases each day. We’ll be watching this space closely as the sector continues to change during the pandemic and in response to pressing compliance needs.”

Over the last four years, Redgate’s annual report has provided valuable insights into how and why DevOps is being adopted, along with the drivers for introducing it for both application and database development, and the obstacles businesses and organizations in every sector face.

With responses from developers, database specialists and IT leadership around the globe across all industry verticals, from small companies to big enterprises, Redgate’s report also highlights the varying challenges sector by sector.

Download the 2020 State of Database DevOps in Healthcare to see the full picture of how and why DevOps is being adopted across a rapidly changing sector.

About Redgate Software

Redgate makes ingeniously simple software used by over 800,000 IT professionals around the world and is the leading Microsoft SQL Server tools vendor. Redgate’s philosophy is to design highly usable, reliable tools which elegantly solve the problems developers and DBAs face every day and help them to adopt compliant database DevOps. As well as streamlining database development and preventing the database being a bottleneck, this helps organizations introduce data protection by design and by default. As a result, more than 100,000 companies use Redgate tools, including 91% of those in the Fortune 100.