What’s the value of a ‘software as a service’ (SaaS) subscription model in healthcare? Ingrid Turner, our Revenue Associate will discuss pricing structures, tier systems and the inherent benefits of SaaS health solutions to help strengthen and scale practices.
Quick guide to software as a service ‘SaaS’ pricing models in healthcare
‘Software as a service’ or ‘SaaS’ in simple terms is an application based on the Internet or ‘the cloud’ that you pay for under a subscription model. It doesn't have to be a complicated piece of software, it can be as simple as using an internet-based calendar or a healthcare app.
Microsoft notes some of the key advantages of the SaaS model include:
- The ability to gain access to sophisticated applications: Without having to buy additional products.
- Cost efficiency: Users only pay for what they use
- Real-time connectivity: SaaS makes it easier to collaborate with your team, as you can access information from any device that is connected to the internet
- It is easily accessible: All you need is an internet connection as the data is stored securely on the cloud
What is the value in SaaS in healthcare?
There are a number of reasons why healthcare practitioners choose to invest in SaaS solutions, and why using cloud-based applications rather than server-based applications is gaining popularity in healthcare:
- SaaS is a subscription-based model with lower costs upfront: You aren't buying a piece of software, server or hardware outright that needs to be installed, which immediately removes installation and servicing costs.
- SaaS software is easy to implement and set up: You don't need to learn how to download and install the software, it is already in the cloud and ready to use from the get go.
- SaaS applications are often seen to be more convenient to use: Compared to traditional software applications, as you can access them anywhere, anytime through a web browser. In healthcare, SaaS solutions allow health professionals to easily access patient files and information directly from the cloud.
- SaaS applications are more flexible in pricing: Typically offered in tiered subscriptions based on the number of active users, the amount of data needed, or the type of services offered. In the context of the healthcare industry, SaaS solutions allow practices to easily scale their software needs with their practice growth. As a subscription product, it also means you have flexibility to cancel the subscription if you choose to switch to another solution.
- Using SaaS solutions is a time saver: You can access patient files in the press of a button whether you're in the middle of a consultation or working out of hours. You can also integrate SaaS into a variety of programs which adds additional ease of use.
SaaS healthcare trends
The SaaS healthcare revolution is only beginning with a number of trends emerging in the industry.
- The implementation of AI: Medical professionals can utilise the power of AI to assist them in diagnosing patients and finding abnormalities where the human eye might miss.
- Tighter security: Information stored and backed up on robust cloud platforms means it is protected with more advanced encrypted software, keeping patients data secure.
- The use of multiple clouds: Companies are beginning to harness the power of platform as a service (PaaS). This means they are using different cloud platforms which in turn will give them the confidence to increase their ability to store, analyse and use their data
- Vertical SaaS: This allows companies to target clients and supply chains while tailoring operations. An example of this would be healthcare business intelligence software and modern logistics analytics.
How is SaaS software pricing structured in healthcare?
SaaS software pricing is a bit different to those who use a server-based model. SaaS pricing can vary from provider to provider. There are various pricing structures but here are the most popular ones:
- Flat rate: Users pay a single price which gives them access to all of the software's features.
- Tiered: Customers have a few options ranging from affordable to expensive rates depending on what they want to use and how often they use it.
- Per person: A company will pay more for a SaaS product if more people are using it.
- Usage/Pay as you go: This allows for people to pay as much as they use the product. If a user interacts with the software daily, they will pay more than someone who uses it weekly.
Why are there pricing increases in SaaS subscriptions?
Like many commercial services, price increases are inevitable in SaaS subscription models. Here are some common reasons why you will see incremental price increases in SaaS subscription models:
- Improvements and innovations in the product’s added features and capabilities
- Security updates and tighter data safety enhancements
- Scale of the service, training and support team on hand to help you
At Clinic to Cloud, we are passionate about improving the connectivity of the digital health ecosystem, and invest carefully in ensuring our SaaS platform provides our customers as much value, features and benefits needed to scale and strengthen a modern practice.