Alex Painter - 14 May 2019
A recent study found that nearly half of all internet traffic in 2018 came via a mobile app. Across sectors, it’s clear that smartphones are increasingly the preferred method for accessing web content and the trend is forcing organizations to rethink their approach to app development, accessibility and interoperability.
Take the healthcare industry as a prime example—earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed a new interoperability rule that would make it easier for patients and healthcare providers to securely and easily access structured electronic health information (EHI) using smartphone applications.
The proposed ruling is focused on accessibility in the patient population, but there is another important demographic that needs the ability to interact seamlessly with healthcare content via a variety of platforms and operating systems: the physicians and healthcare workers who access the data on a daily basis. In the age of electronic health records (EHRs), healthcare workers are moving toward more widespread adoption of smartphone, tablet, and traditional platforms to complete their workflow. But how can healthcare technology providers deliver software and solutions that function seamlessly in this heterogeneous device environment? And, taking that a step further, how can they ensure interoperability with other EHR systems and applications?
This is a challenge with which global healthcare solutions provider (and Eggplant customer) Cerner is familiar. Prior to deploying Eggplant, the company was struggling with mobile solutions and a manual testing environment that was inefficient and costly. Cerner needed one test automation tool that could work across all platforms and would support a streamlined, continuous delivery approach.
Continuous testing is especially critical for Cerner’s mobile solutions, where the expectation is that new releases will be issued monthly if not more frequently. And in the healthcare setting, poor software quality or incompatible applications don’t just deliver a bad customer experience—even the smallest issue can result in a patient safety problem. As Lynne Beebe, Cerner’s director of cloud application development, puts it in this video, high quality in the healthcare space is paramount.
Using Eggplant has enabled Cerner to ensure the high quality experience its customers need to provide timely, effective and coordinated care. In addition to these efficiency and quality improvements, the deployment has enabled Cerner to:
- Cut testing time from weeks to hours, paving the way for continuous software releases
- Devote less time to creating automated tests
- Execute testing faster
For more on these and other improvements, check out Cerner’s case study video in its entirety here.
Fragmentation in devices and platforms leads inevitably to an exponential increase in the interoperability problem. Applications don't just have to work on different platforms. Data also has to flow seamlessly between different applications on different platforms.
The mind-boggling number of workflows mean the challenge in testing all of this has gone beyond the capabilities of manual testing, with AI-driven automated testing no longer just desirable but required to deliver systems that work.
The need for intelligent, continuous testing in the healthcare sector will only grow as industry stakeholders are tasked with providing a seamless digital experience that integrates with other applications and web content. This pressure will not let up in the foreseeable future—in fact, in April the HHS extended the comment period for its interoperability rules after receiving requests from providers, vendors and other industry groups to have more time to analyze the proposed regulation.
Learn more about how Eggplant can help you test intelligently and ensure seamless connectivity across hospital systems and applications.