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Pros & Cons of Remote IT Support For Hospitals

April 18, 2024
Reading Time: 7 min.
IT Systems in Hospitals Are Vital To Smooth Operations 
two people using computer

The days of waiting for a technician to come onsite to solve computer or network problems are increasingly being replaced through the convenience of remote IT support in hospitals.

The technology behind supporting remote IT support has been around for decades. It enables users, regardless of where they are located, to access systems and files remotely through a network. In addition to providing convenient access, it also opens up opportunities to collaborate, which has been shown to help improve productivity.

Remote IT support technologies also enable technicians to remotely connect to users’ computers to help solve issues with systems or software. This can be a significant time saver as it can help resolve issues more quickly. Using the technology, technicians can conduct diagnostics and correct them remotely without having to be scheduled for a visit.

Remote IT support in hospitals is being increasingly being embraced as leadership looks for ways to reduce system downtime and utilize highly skilled technicians at a fraction of the cost they pay for traditional on-site visits.

Given the complexity and critical nature of hospital systems, however, some remain reluctant to open them up to enable a vendor to access and troubleshoot remotely. While they acknowledge the benefits, they are concerned about exposing their systems and patient data along with the constant threat of a cyber-attack. They may also be skeptical as to whether remote diagnostics is as effective as having a more hands-on approach. Because of these concerns many hospitals are proceeding carefully when deciding how to optimize remote support for their systems.

To provide more clarity to help hospital leadership weigh the benefits and potential issues of remote IT access, we have created the following list of some of the key remote IT support pros and cons curated from several sources, including Techradar, Executech, and Biz Tech Solutions.


  • Time savings. Because issues with systems or networks generally occur without warning, the processes they support can become instantly derailed. Scheduling a technician to come on-site to fix a system only adds to the downtime. This can take hours or even days of waiting for an available technician. That means having to circumvent the impacted system impacted (if even possible) and resort to workarounds and manual procedures that take up even more time and effort. Furthermore, if configuration files must be sent in advance, it can slow down the trouble-shooting process even more. Remote access is just a log-in away, putting the technician in front of all files and systems almost instantly.
  • Productivity. The ability to deliver support more quickly typically equates to less system downtime. That can have a dramatic impact on productivity. Employees are back up and running more quickly. In a busy hospital any issues that interrupt the flow of processes and the caring of patients can quickly become major issues and can impact care to patients.
  • Money savings. The cost of bringing a technician on-site can be costly. This is especially so in more remote areas where technicians may have to travel greater distances. Being able to deliver remote IT support means that a qualified technician can conduct it regardless of where they are located. The provider doesn’t have to pass along the costs of having their team members travel to conduct support. And those support hours can add up if the problem isn’t quickly resolved.
  • Access to top technicians. Most technicians have different areas of expertise. Being able to connect remotely enables the hospital to obtain the best fit for their specific issue.
  • Service scalability. Hospitals are dynamic environments. The level of IT support needed for a system one day will likely change a few days later. The greater flexibility provided through remote IT support means that a hospital will pay only for what they need at any given time. That scalability is important as needs fluctuate to adjust to shifts in services, technologies and patient populations.
  • Disaster recovery. Should a disaster occur, having the ability to connect through remote access to a skilled technician can help the provider navigate through the issues associated with the situation. It can help them recover hospital data more quickly and get their systems up and running without having to wait for a specialist to come on-site.
  • Logging and reporting. Most suppliers who use remote support can also provide diagnostics reports that keep track of all system issues with details as to how each was solved. This can be helpful to management to better understand potential system vulnerabilities and put processes in place to safeguard against future system failures.
  • Ongoing system maintenance. Vendors who provide remote support may also conduct ongoing maintenance. This gives hospitals a more proactive approach to keeping their systems up and running efficiently. Technicians may also alert the hospital to situations that might become problematic so that the hospital can tackle them hopefully before a system failure occurs.


  • Loss of control. Having an IT person on site enables management to directly oversee the process of issue resolution. They can ask questions directly and see, firsthand, that the work was completed to their satisfaction. It can also equip the hospital with added insights should the problem occur again.
  • Security. Many hospital leaders remain hesitant to open up their systems to external support due to concerns over security. For that reason, reputable hospital IT remote support providers continue to innovate their platforms to optimize data and network security. That is why it is so important to carefully vet a provider before greenlighting remote support. It is important to ensure that the highest standards of safety of data and network protection are maintained.
  • Technical limitations. A concern that often arises is whether the remote support technician has the specific skillset required to work on a sophisticated piece of equipment. This can be especially concerning when those systems are highly specialized and may even have proprietary components. That is why many hospitals rely upon tested local technicians who know their systems and have a track record of successful problem resolution.
  • Lack of onsite access. There may be some system issues that are more difficult to tackle remotely. It can be time-consuming for a remote technician to attempt to walk an employee through a series of tests that require on-site presence. In some cases, these kinds of issues may be handled more quickly by an on-site expert. That is why some hospitals have an internal IT team with highly specialized technicians.
person using computer in pharmacy

Is Remote IT Support Right For Your Hospital Systems?

More and more hospitals are opting to open up their systems for remote support. As remote diagnostics continue to grow in sophistication and safety, it can make a big difference, saving time and money for hospitals.

But does this make sense for your hospital? After you have weighed the pros and cons above, you should collaborate with your team before making a decision. Here are some questions to ask your team and the vendors offering support for your systems.

  • What systems are you opening up to remote access? Are they systems that the vendor is confident they can access remotely? Are they doing this for other clients? Are there highly specialized components on-site that may be difficult to access?
  • How reliable is the remote support software being used by your provider? Do they have technicians available 24/7? Ask about their level of first call resolutions? Look for 80% or higher.
  • How skilled are the technicians? Are they using the latest technologies, such as AI, to quickly identify the source of issues and correct them? Do they have seasoned experts on staff?
  • How secure is the system? Look for best in class features including advanced authentication and permission controls, remote session logging and forensics, secure access, and an efficient architecture to support them.
  • Remote IT support in hospitals has many advantages. Reducing downtime, taking advantage of top service technicians, and saving time and money are only a few of them. Before opening up your system to remote connectivity, however, it is important to do the necessary groundwork to ensure that it is the best decision for your hospital systems and networks. Make sure that the remote technicians have a track record of safety and efficiency.

    Access to secure remote IT support is helping to make hospitals more efficient. If handled carefully, it may be an excellent choice for your hospital.