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Digitalization for SHI providers: Google Cloud Summit South

Sovereign IT as a prerequisite

Digitization for health insurers: at the Google Cloud Summit South
Sovereign IT
Google Cloud Platform
Digital Transformation

At the Google Cloud Summit South, we focused on the digitalization of the healthcare industry. In a panel discussion, the migration of kubus IT provided evidence that the use of Google Cloud is compatible with the principle of Sovereign IT for SHI providers.

The three German Google Cloud Summits this year had different focuses. The Google Cloud Summit South, which took place in Munich on June 4, 2024, focused not least on cloud use in the healthcare sector. As a signature partner of the event, Arvato Systems addressed the topic of "Cloud power for health insurance companies" in a highly interesting panel discussion. The practical example of kubus IT, subsidiary and IT service provider of AOK Bayern and AOK Plus, showed that using the advantages offered by a hyperscaler such as Google Cloud no longer has to be at odds with the data protection and data security requirements of the strictly regulated statutory health insurance companies. The successful data center migration of kubus IT proves that the digitalization of business processes using the cloud and the requirements for sovereign and secure IT are already compatible today. This important digitization step into the cloud is still ahead of many statutory health insurers.

f.l.t.r. Robert Riemer (Google Cloud), Marcel Füchtenhans (Arvato Systems), Markus Arnold (kubus IT), Christian Scholz (Arvato Systems)

"Cloud power for the health insurance companies"

The participants in our panel discussion were kubus IT as a service provider for the two AOKs, Arvato Systems as a sovereign IT specialist and service provider for kubus IT and Google Cloud as a supporter of cloud technology. Markus Arnold, head of the KV core services division, presented the kubus IT perspective. We were joined by Christian Scholz, our Vice President Cloud Business, and Marcel Füchtenhans, our Enterprise Account Executive Health. Google Cloud, in turn, was represented by Robert Riemer. kubus IT, based in Bayreuth, is the specially founded IT service provider of AOK Bayern and AOK PLUS. The company's official name is therefore "kubus IT - Arbeitsgemeinschaft von Körperschaften des öffentlichen Rechts eGbR". In order to open up the secure path to a sovereign cloud for parts of the statutory health insurance funds' IT, kubus IT relied on the support of Arvato Systems. The panel provided valuable insights into how transition projects can be successfully implemented and made it clear how innovation and partnership drive digital transformation. Markus Arnold from kubus IT was very satisfied with the outcome. In his opinion, Arvato Systems had mastered the mammoth task of
excellently - on time, on budget and in terms of quality. kubus IT can now decide how to offer its applications and services according to its needs: in a completely isolated area with dedicated hardware, in shared models with high security standards through to innovative approaches with a connection to a hyperscaler. This means that some workloads and use cases are migrated to the cloud at the highest level of technical sovereignty - to a sovereign cloud.

The central IT challenge of the statutory health insurance funds: Digitization

During the panel discussion, it became clear that there is no way around digitalization for SHI providers, especially since the legislator has also imposed enormous pressure to digitalize. Together with technological leaps in ever shorter cycles, however, this is a major challenge for many SHI providers. In view of the complex, often still paper-heavy and often outdated processes, there is still a great need for optimization in terms of digitalization in the sector. At the same time, SHI providers will only be able to transform their IT in a sustainable and future-proof way if they take the step into the cloud where it is possible and makes sense. On the other hand, all the upcoming topics such as digitalization, hyperscaling, sovereign cloud, big data and cybersecurity are not something that SHI providers can tackle on their own. After all, these are all issues far removed from the core business of a SHI company. It is therefore no coincidence that kubus IT relied on the expert support of Arvato Systems when it came to cloud migration. Especially in the context of our services for SHI providers, digitalization - where necessary on the basis of sovereign IT - is an absolute core issue for us. As an experienced, trustworthy and German multi-cloud provider, we know this: SHI providers need highly specialized, competent and at the same time individual solutions.

The Sovereign Cloud as an element of Sovereign IT

In view of the highly sensitive patient data held by health insurance companies and the particularly strict regulatory requirements, future-proof digitalization including cloud and AI use in many areas is only conceivable against the backdrop of sovereign IT. It is often essential that the SHI itself retains control over its data. Hyperscalers have now also recognized this need. Some have at least already announced Sovereign Cloud offerings. However, a Sovereign Cloud is currently only available from Google Cloud. Google Cloud was the sensible option in the kubus IT project. This is because the Google Distributed Cloud already extends the infrastructure and services of Google Cloud to data centers and edge locations. An Air Gap configuration is also possible. With the highest level of sovereignty, the Sovereign Cloud, Google Cloud addresses three important aspects of sovereign IT.

  • Data sovereignty: The customer retains complete control over encryption and access to their data.
  • Software sovereignty: The customer can manage their workloads without having to rely on the cloud provider's software.
  • Operational sovereignty: The customer has transparency and control over the cloud provider's operational processes.

Sovereign IT: the path to innovative technology in the sensitive SHI environment

We are convinced that the principle of sovereign IT is often the prerequisite for being able to use the latest technologies, from cloud computing to artificial intelligence, even in sensitive environments with high security requirements and strict regulatory requirements. It is therefore only logical that kubus IT chose Google Cloud on the one hand and Arvato Systems on the other for the cloud option for the statutory health insurance funds. With three data centers and nine other locations, we have a presence throughout Germany. Arvato Systems also offers integrated IT services for network operators of critical infrastructure (KRITIS). And we have been involved in the digital transformation of the healthcare sector for many years. For example, we are the operator of the telematics infrastructure for the electronic health card in Germany. At Arvato Systems, we know what is needed for the urgent digitalization of SHI systems: sovereign IT - the synthesis of innovation and security.

Do you also need to drive digitalization in your SHI system? Get in touch with us.

Let's talk about the digitalized SHI system

Marcel Füchtenhans_quer

Get to know Marcel Füchtenhans, our expert for the digitalization of health insurance, in a short and non-binding appointment. He will be happy to look at your individual needs analysis and support you in the digital transformation of your SHI.

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Written by

Chrsitian S. Mai 2017_helle-BG_kleiner
Christian Scholz
Expert for the Google Cloud Platform