Empowering researchers and revolutionizing medical care with cloud technology


Balancing cybersecurity and innovation

Patient health information is sensitive and highly regulated, historically making the healthcare industry more cautious than other sectors in adopting cloud technology. But with recent advancements in cloud security, hospital systems and healthcare providers across the globe are making up for lost time, ditching costly, outmoded on-premises legacy data systems for the innovative possibilities of the cloud. One renowned international healthcare organization wanted to be at the forefront of that shift. It envisioned harnessing Google Cloud to help improve patient care and empower groundbreaking research by opening up global access to its trove of patient data.

The challenge was bringing that vision to life while navigating complex regulatory, privacy and cybersecurity concerns. To make it happen, the organization needed to weave risk and compliance considerations into its cloud transformation plans from the very start. PwC joined as the strategic advisor with deep knowledge of Google Cloud, healthcare compliance and the vision to keep up with a physician- and researcher-led culture of relentless innovation.


Collaborating as a community of solvers

PwC assembled teams of technology and controls specialists, drawing on a wide range of knowledge across the firm — including cloud infrastructure, cybersecurity protocols and healthcare compliance — to plan for a foundation backed by proper standards. PwC focused on designing a future-flexible system that could manage the growing cyber threat landscape and compliance challenges. As a result, the healthcare organization was able to plan its infrastructure around the way regulators think, test the system against compliance controls before it was deployed and continue to monitor it throughout the build. 

Planning smart infrastructure from the start

The process touched on what many at the healthcare organization viewed as a fundamental conflict: balancing the boundary-pushing goals of physicians and researchers with the security concerns of key decision-makers, such as the CTO, CIO and CISO.

Researchers want to advance new outcomes and treatments by making data such as electronic health records, patient population and patient satisfaction surveys available to colleagues and third parties. But regulations like HIPAA require that it be protected against risks such as unauthorized disclosure or modification. Together, the healthcare organization and PwC developed a cloud platform aligned with HIPAA and HITRUST requirements to support secure, intentional data sharing — while keeping the flexibility to support physicians’ and researchers’ ever-evolving needs as they push patient care forward.

Driving revolutionary research via cloud capabilities

Within the controlled environment of the healthcare organization’s new Google Cloud platform, third-party researchers not only receive secure access to healthcare data that can be used to derive new insights, they can also take advantage of leading-edge, cloud-enabled workspaces. Where, traditionally, researchers who had worked hard to earn a grant might still be unable to access an on-premises supercomputer, the new cloud platform opens up AI and machine learning capabilities in a secure cloud environment.


Cloud tech offers a flexible foundation for the future

With PwC’s help to implement Google Cloud, this leading healthcare organization now has a foundation to support strengthened cybersecurity and cutting-edge research for years to come. As researchers, physicians and technical engineers continue to discover what the cloud can do, Google Cloud will continue to develop yet-unknown approaches to data analysis. 

Meanwhile, the fine balance between cyber threat protection and research demands will fuel successively sophisticated iterations of the platform into the future. The more researchers uncover new capabilities and features within the cloud environment, the more advanced the controls necessary to secure it can become. In short, the best of all possible worlds: maximum security meets maximum innovation.


reduction in time to cloud adoption through security and HITRUST compliance enablement


reduction in manual hours needed for cloud security configuration and operations through automation


increase in threat detection, response time and accuracy through additional capabilities and reduction in false threat positives

We deeply understand today's technology requirements and the need to continuously innovate. By working together with PwC, we were able to help this organization drive its digital transformation while staying compliant and focused on delivering quality care — all while meeting its goal to become cloud-forward. 

Taylor Lehmann
Director, Office of the CISO, Google Cloud

This was a great opportunity for PwC to draw on a holistic body of knowledge from across the firm. We used our diverse experience to help implement security, compliance and risk solutions that can continue to evolve around the researchers’ needs.

Matt Wilden
Principal, PwC

Learn how PwC and Google utilize Cloud for business-led transformations.

Discover cloud-based solutions

Contact us

Matthew Wilden

Principal, Google Cybersecurity Alliance Leader, PwC US

Dallas Dolen

Partner, Global Google Alliance Leader, PwC US

Follow us

Required fields are marked with an asterisk(*)

By submitting your email address, you acknowledge that you have read the Privacy Statement and that you consent to our processing data in accordance with the Privacy Statement (including international transfers). If you change your mind at any time about wishing to receive the information from us, you can send us an email message using the Contact Us page.