New Research Finds Healthcare Organizations Prioritize Security in Digital Transformation Efforts, But Face Budget and Internal Alignment Challenges

Report from CHIME Digital Health Most Wired, in partnership with Imprivata, finds just 15% of healthcare organizations view cross-functional alignment as the first step in enabling a successful digital transformation plan. 

Waltham, Mass. – February 23, 2024Imprivata, the digital identity company for life-and mission-critical industries, today announced the availability of the Digital Health Most Wired (DHWM) Digital Transformation Priorities Trend Report (DTP) in partnership with the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). The segment report evaluates the current state of digital transformation priorities for small and large healthcare organizations (HCOs) and barriers to technology adoption. Security, clinical quality and safety, and patient engagement were among the top priorities for HCOs in 2024. Yet, healthcare organizations face challenges with digital transformation due to budgetary constraints and internal alignment issues.

“In an industry changing as fast as the digital health market is, it’s understandable IT teams may be easily tempted to chase after every new ‘shining object.’ Setting priorities helps HCOs ensure they remain productive and less overwhelmed all the while steadily progressing toward thoughtfully established strategic goals,” said Lorren Pettit, CHIME’s Vice President of Digital Health Analytics (DHA), on the importance of Imprivata’s DHMW’s DTP section.

The annual DHMW survey represents 40% of U.S. hospitals and provides healthcare leaders a comprehensive profile of digital health usage across the country. The report details the current state of and barriers to digital transformation, including:

  • Top Priorities: Mobile technology is recognized as a trending priority to help HCOs improve security, clinician productivity, and patient safety and experience.
  • Transformation Progression: Over 60% of HCOs report being on track with their digital transformation. However, just 15% said they involve all departments as a first step when developing a plan —indicating organizations struggle with anticipated cultural resistance to technology implementation
  • Managing Digital Transformation: 42% of HCOs cite a lack of dedicated budget among their top three challenges, with 48% stating that executive commitment beyond IT is a key step for securing needed investments.

“When HCOs are weighing security vs. productivity, security vs. efficiency, or infrastructure vs. patient care, the level of anticipated cultural resistance in those areas matters,” said Joel Burleson-Davis, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Engineering, Cyber at Imprivata. “It’s not that nurses and doctors dislike technology or aren’t tech savvy; it’s more that their experience with technology often involves the need to step back when they face changes. For instance, when new security initiatives are rolled out, there will likely be, and rightly so, blowback from users if the new tech or process makes their lives worse.”

Implementing a digital transformation strategy requires a collaboration between leadership, clinicians, and technical partners. A successful strategy should increase operational efficiencies, reduce costs, improve workforce experience, and deliver better healthcare outcomes.

The report highlights mobile technology as a top priority in digital transformation. Healthcare professionals already utilize smartphones and tablets in their clinical care, benefiting EHR optimization. Tasks like medication administration and unified communications are more efficient on mobile devices, eliminating the need for computers and multiple logins. A comprehensive digital transformation strategy should include a mobile digital maturity plan to meet evolving healthcare needs and enhance patient care.

However, while the survey revealed that over 60% of HCOs reported being on track with their transformation plans, the combination of securing dedicated budget and the appropriate digital tools were reported to be critical in continued strategic execution.

“The reality is that most HCOs don't have the budget for everything, so prioritization is crucial to success. Involving key clinical, operational and security stakeholders early in the process can ensure that the right decisions are made,” said Dr. Sean Kelly, Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President of Customer Strategy for Healthcare at Imprivata. “Digital transformation is important, but not for its own sake. What problems are we trying to solve? How do we make clinicians’ and patients’ lives better? Technology such as mobile or AI can be powerful, but ultimately, they are just the means to an end – enabling the highest quality of care delivery in the most secure, efficient, and cost-effective manner possible.”

For more information on how to develop an effective digital transformation strategy and leverage mobile technology, join Imprivata on March 21 at 12pm ET for a discussion moderated by Dr. Sean Kelly. Register for the webinar here.

About Imprivata  
Imprivata is the digital identity company for life- and mission-critical industries, redefining how organizations solve complex workflow, security, and compliance challenges with solutions that protect critical data and applications without workflow disruption. Its platform of interoperable identity, authentication, and access management solutions enable organizations in over 45 countries to fully manage and secure all enterprise and third-party digital identities by establishing trust between people, technology, and information. For more information, visit

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