Mentions of cloud computing within the filings of companies in the healthcare sector rose 15% between the final quarter of 2021 and the first quarter of 2022.
In total, the frequency of sentences related to cloud computing between April 2021 and March 2022 was 36% higher than in 2016 when GlobalData, from whom our data for this article is taken, first began to track the key issues referred to in company filings.
When healthcare companies publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. Cloud computing is one of these topics - companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.
To assess whether cloud computing is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of healthcare companies, two measures were calculated. Firstly, we looked at the percentage of companies which have mentioned cloud computing at least once in filings during the past twelve months - this was 56% compared to 31% in 2016. Secondly, we calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to cloud computing.
Of the 20 biggest employers in the healthcare sector, Cerner was the company which referred to cloud computing the most between April 2021 and March 2022. GlobalData identified 25 cloud-related sentences in the United States-based company's filings - 0.7% of all sentences. HCA mentioned cloud computing the second most - the issue was referred to in 0.09% of sentences in the company's filings. Other top employers with high cloud mentions included Netcare, BDMS and Tenet.
Across all healthcare companies the filing published in the first quarter of 2022 which exhibited the greatest focus on cloud computing came from Allscripts. Of the document's 1,704 sentences, 26 (1.5%) referred to cloud computing.
This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on cloud computing and how important the issue is considered within the healthcare sector, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning cloud computing more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company's ventures into cloud computing have been successes or failures.
In the last quarter, healthcare companies based in the United States were most likely to mention cloud computing with 0.21% of sentences in company filings referring to the issue. In contrast, companies with their headquarters in Western Europe mentioned cloud computing in just 0.03% of sentences.