October 20, 2021

Article
3 min

What Healthcare Organizations Need to Know About Single Sign-On

SSO solutions improve productivity and security and help healthcare providers adapt to the new normal of pervasive mobility.

Michael Goad

In recent years, we’ve seen a complete mobile revolution in healthcare. But less than a decade ago, you likely would still have seen many clinicians making their rounds with an array of devices attached to their belts, including pagers and scanners along with their smartphones. Today, that functionality has moved to unified mobile devices in many organizations. As a result, clinicians are relying on a single smartphone for the same functionality they once needed several different devices to get. 

This is great for many reasons, but it also illustrates the need for single sign-on tools for mobile applications and devices. Here are four benefits of SSO in healthcare environments:

Improved Productivity

From a productivity standpoint, every minute a nurse or physician spends logging in to a mobile application is a minute they’re unable to do their jobs. And with provider shortages already plaguing many healthcare institutions, it is imperative to give clinicians the tools they need to get to work as soon as their shifts start. Some clinicians may be using eight or more mobile apps on a single device. If they need to spend the first 15 minutes of their shifts simply logging in to these applications, they won’t be able to deliver the same level of productivity as they could with a more streamlined setup. 

In the past, integration hurdles made SSO less practical and the number of devices often in use made it less necessary. But with many of those tech challenges solved — and more applications moving to smartphones — SSO has become both simpler and more important than ever.

Enhanced Continuity and Security

When clinicians need to log in to eight different applications to start the workday, that means they also must log out of eight different applications when it’s time to go home. After a long shift, it’s easy for a nurse or doctor to accidentally leave themselves logged in to some mobile apps, creating confusion and even potential security problems. 

Many mobile devices, after all, are handed off from one clinician to another when shifts change. If a physician fails to sign out of an electronic medical record system, for instance, the rest of the hospital staff may think that that person is still available — and may not know that the doctor who is actually working is even on duty. An SSO solution essentially eliminates this problem.

Streamlined User Experience

No one wants to work for a poorly run organization, and no one wants to start their workday dealing with processes that seem pointless. By implementing SSO solutions, healthcare organizations can not only boost productivity among their clinicians and other employees, but also eliminate pain points for users.

Culture of Automation

The healthcare industry is looking for ways to automate manual processes. SSO solutions are a perfect fit for such initiatives, especially when they incorporate tools that automatically provision devices for the next user during a shift change. For instance, some SSO solutions allow users to scan their ID badge at a device docking station, which automatically authenticates them to a smartphone. Then, they simply grab the mobile device and get to work.

Story by Michael Goad

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