SSG Blog

Choosing the Right Low-Code Enterprise Software Platform for Public Health: Key Considerations

Posted on April 18th, 2024   |   SSG

Public health agencies are on the front lines of safeguarding communities. From disease surveillance, outbreak control, and immunization programs, their work hinges on efficient workflows and robust data management. However, legacy systems (usually disparate and paper-based) often struggle to keep pace with evolving public health needs. Meanwhile, traditional software development can be time-consuming, inflexible, and expensive.

Amidst this constant struggle to juggle limited resources with the need to modernize workflows and systems, low-code enterprise software platforms emerged as a game-changing innovation. Below, we examine low-code platforms, how they enable public health agencies to improve public outcomes, and key considerations for choosing a low-code enterprise software platform.

Understanding Enterprise Low-Code Platforms

Low-code platforms are visual development environments that allow users with minimal coding experience to create applications. These platforms often use drag-and-drop interfaces, pre-built components, and automation tools to streamline the applications and tools development process. 

This programming approach allows public health agencies to rapidly develop and deploy applications critical for public health functions, reporting, and management, minus the lengthy timelines and specialized resources typically associated with software development.

Benefits of Low-Code Development for Enterprises

There is a litany of compelling reasons for public health agencies to consider low-code solutions:

  • Faster development: Low-code platforms significantly reduce development cycles compared to traditional coding methods. In one global survey, most respondents believed low-code development to be up to 60% faster than traditional methods (Statista, March 24, 2023). This acceleration is crucial for public health agencies that need to adapt quickly to emerging health threats.
  • Reduced costs: By minimizing the need for professional developers, low-code platforms bring down the overall cost of software development. This frees up valuable resources for other public health initiatives. 
  • Increased agility: The deployment speed and ease of use of low-code solutions enable agencies to adapt to changing public health needs more effectively. Organizations can readily incorporate new features or functionalities, ensuring public health programs remain responsive to evolving demands. 
  • Improved data management and analysis: Public health relies heavily on accurate and timely data. Low-code platforms allow agencies to build applications that facilitate data management solutions, visualization, and analysis. This enhances data-driven decision-making for effective disease control and prevention strategies. 
  • Empowered Citizen Developers: Public health agencies often have staff members who deeply understand their specific workflows and data needs. Low-code platforms enable these citizen developers to create custom applications and tools without relying solely on IT departments, fostering a culture of collaboration and innovation.  
  • Enhanced Public Engagement: Public health agencies can leverage low-code platforms to build user-friendly applications for appointment scheduling, immunization records management, and health information access. This fosters transparency, builds trust, and increases community participation in public health initiatives. 

“Organizations are increasingly turning to low-code development technologies to fulfill growing demands for speed application delivery and highly customized automation workflows,” said Gartner Senior Market Research Specialist Varsha Mehta (Gartner, Dec. 13, 2022). Adding, “Equipping both professional IT developers and non-IT personas with diverse low-code tools enables organizations to reach the level of digital competency and speed of delivery required for the modern agile environment.”

Key Considerations in Choosing a Low-Code Platform

While there are several advantages to using low-code platforms, choosing a platform aligned with your objectives is pivotal for successful implementation. Here are some key considerations for public health agencies:

  • Scalability: Public health needs can fluctuate depending on outbreaks and emergencies. Choose a public health software that can scale seamlessly to accommodate increasing user demands, data volumes, and storage requirements. Doing so enables your organization to handle usage surges without compromising performance and the need for constant redevelopment.
  • Security: Public health data is highly sensitive. Choose a platform with robust security features, including data encryption, access controls, and regular security updates to safeguard confidential information. These features help ensure compliance with industry regulations like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). 
  • Customization: While low-code platforms are designed for ease of use, speed, and efficiency, they must also offer the flexibility to develop applications that meet the diverse needs of public health agencies. This means allowing for customization in workflows, reporting, and user interfaces to cater to specific public health initiatives. 
  • Integrations: Public health agencies often utilize a complex ecosystem of existing software systems. Choose a platform that integrates seamlessly with your current data management tools, communication platforms, reporting systems, and other relevant applications. 
  • Support and Training: Despite their simplified architecture, low-code platforms still require some level of technical know-how. Look for vendors who provide comprehensive training programs and readily available technical support to ensure your team can leverage the platform effectively. 

While low-code platforms offer ease of use, speed, and efficiency, they are designed to co-exist with traditional software development. Low-code solutions enable professional developers to get their work done more efficiently while allowing organizations and individuals with less technical expertise to develop applications that enhance public health outcomes.  

SSG’s Approach to Low-Code Solutions

Throughout our 20-year history, we’ve seen our public health partners struggle with inflexible solutions that are expensive to maintain, hard to customize, and don’t provide the interoperability required by holistic public health responses. We understand that time and funding is precious. That’s why we designed our award-winning platform, Casetivity, to support a comprehensive suite of workflow applications that are purpose-built for modernizing public health administration.

Here’s a glimpse into how our low-code application platform, Casetivity, is helping transform how public health agencies deliver services:

  • Standardized data integration: HL7 standards provide a framework for retrieving, sharing, exchanging, and integrating electronic health information. Our solutions are HL7 compliant, ensuring interoperability with diverse electronic health systems.  
  • Advanced analytics and reporting: Our solutions enable public health agencies to gather and analyze comprehensive and uniform data sets, consolidating disparate information streams into actionable insights. This provides decision-makers with a more holistic view of public health. 
  • Secure and compliant data management: Our solutions prioritize data security and adhere to all relevant privacy regulations. This commitment helps foster trust among public health agencies, healthcare providers, and the general public. 

The diverse functionalities of Casetivity accelerate the creation of new technologies that matter in the fight against communicable diseases and other health issues. We at SSG are proud of our commitment to this approach, and as more and more states turn to our innovative solutions, we continue to be at the forefront of the low-code revolution in the public health sector. 

The Future of Low-Code in Enterprise Development

The trajectory of low code in enterprise development, particularly within the public health sector, is poised for significant growth. According to a recent Center for Digital Government survey, 78% of federal and state technology leaders are clamoring for faster approaches to development (Government Technology, n.d.). As agencies continue to recognize the value of rapid, flexible, and efficient software development, low-code platforms will play an increasingly central role in public health strategies. 

In the future, more advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities will be integrated into low-code platforms, further enhancing their ability to automate processes and analyze data. This continued evolution will enable public health agencies to respond more effectively to health crises and, more importantly, anticipate and mitigate future threats through predictive analytics. 

Contact us today to learn how our low-code solutions can advance your public health data management.