Web-Based, Cloud-Based, SaaS… What is it, and Why do you need it?

Web-Based, Cloud-Based, SaaS…

What is it? Do you need it?

Technology continues to exponentially advance. Keeping up with the lingo isn’t easy. What type of EHR or healthcare software should you be shopping for?


Web-based means that the software’s user interface is accessed through an internet browser, i.e. Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer.  There is power in opening a browser on any trusted computer to log in and access your EHR. It really does mean anytime, anywhere – as long as you have internet of course.

Outdated EHRs and legacy software companies will often deter customers from web-based software under the guise that it is unreliable; this is simply not true. That is why most IT professionals will recommend a small investment in an insurance policy in the form of a backup internet connection for your practice, clinic, or facility. With the internet boom, we have seen higher speeds and lower prices. A backup connection for peace-of-mind and efficiency in the event it is needed, is worth every penny.

Web-based software is the preferred choice and the direction most every software industry is moving.


Where and what is “the cloud?” When we first started hearing about “the cloud” there were skeptics and insecurities about where your data was stored and if it was secure. In the most basic of terms, “the cloud” is a network of servers (the internet) that delivers software and data to your computer. Being cloud-based means that you can access your data, photos, music or software from anywhere at any time. Usually this means a single server is not solely responsible for your data which is good. With the rise of hacking we have seen a rise in the encryption of data to protect it.

The main benefits of using cloud-based software are cost, scalability and quick access.

The cloud is here to stay and is widely accepted as safe and reliable.

The counterpart to cloud-based systems are “on premise” systems.  In the consumer software industry, on premise software solutions are typically legacy or older technology. Many legacy software systems require IT professionals to maintain server hardware and software, security updates, data vulnerability detection, and backups. Maintaining servers locally is expensive and risky. You also hear these systems referred to as “client-server” software.

Modern software companies, like Azalea Health, understand the burden “on premise” systems put on practices and hospitals. Cloud-based software like Azalea EHR allows practices to focus on delivering healthcare without  having to worry about patients’ data or security updates on servers. Doctors get to focus on patients, and software companies take care of the software and hardware.

SaaS – Software as a Service

SaaS, cloud-based, and web-based often are used together. SaaS typically refers to the pricing model associated with cloud-based software. Rather than buy a license from Microsoft for their latest edition of Office, you pay a subscription fee and you always have access to their most recent software.

When you look at SaaS through the Health IT lens, it means lower upfront costs and eliminates the need for hardware and software updates. When software companies control version roll out, it allows them to provide a better user experience by releasing features over time as well as access to implement corrections and security updates minimizing downtime.

The forecast for Health IT is web-based, cloud-based, and SaaS software solutions. If your Health IT provider is not taking steps to keep your software up to date with modern technology, talk to one of our sales consultants to discuss how Azalea Health could benefit your practice or hospital.