HOPKINTON, Mass., March 31 /PRNewswire/ -- EMC Corporation today announced that CareGroup, a leading healthcare network of four Boston-area hospitals affiliated with Harvard Medical School, has expanded its information lifecycle management (ILM) strategy with additional tiers of EMC networked storage, now spanning high-end, mid-tier, disk archive and mass storage. EMC's multi- tiered storage infrastructure, open management software and global services are helping CareGroup manage their online medical data to more efficiently speed patient diagnosis.
Dr. John Halamka, CareGroup's Chief Information Officer, said, "In this time of fiscal constraint in hospitals, the only way to cost-effectively manage the technology needed to ensure superior-quality patient care is by implementing an information lifecycle management strategy. To speed patient diagnosis, we keep our mission-critical patient information on the most high- performance, highly available storage for real-time access, while less- critical data is stored on a lower-cost mid-tier system. To meet regulatory requirements, we are required to keep medical records of our nine million patients for up to 30 years. EMC's focus on storage, software and services has enabled CareGroup to bring its infrastructure to the next level."
In addition to patient records and clinical data at CareGroup, EMC supports the high-performance computing requirements of Harvard's life sciences research program with an EMC Celerra(R) network-attached storage (NAS) solution connected to a 50-node cluster of HP-UX servers. Research data including human genome sequencing, protein folding and novel drug modeling is made available through a Web interface to all of Harvard's affiliated medical facilities.
CareGroup's entire 40-terabyte storage infrastructure is managed using the EMC ControlCenter(TM) family of management software. Robert Messier, CareGroup's Director of Production Services, said, "EMC ControlCenter allows us to provide storage capacity very efficiently where and when it is needed to meet the critical demands of our clinical applications. In just a few years, we've gone from four terabytes of storage to 40. We're able to manage that with the same number of administrators. That's a tenfold increase in storage with no increase in staff."
In addition to EMC ControlCenter, CareGroup deployed EMC SnapView(TM) and EMC TimeFinder(R) software as part of its backup and business continuity process. CareGroup also depends on EMC PowerPath(R) software for automated path failover and load balancing. EMC SAN Copy(TM) migrates data from EMC Symmetrix(R) to EMC CLARiiON(R) storage systems.
"With SAN Copy, we can create policies to direct the movement of data from our high-end EMC Symmetrix to our mid-tier CLARiiON based on a variety of parameters," said Messier. "In addition, we use SnapView to create business continuance volumes (BCVs) of the data on CLARiiON for non-disruptive backup to our StorageTek tape archive. SnapView also enables rapid restore, providing a much faster option than tape. This software is extremely important to us. It contributes to a higher level of availability, which affects how our entire institution functions in providing primary care."
CareGroup's EMC storage infrastructure also supports PeopleSoft, Microsoft Exchange 5.0, Web, and in-house clinical applications running on a combination of 20 UNIX server partitions on 6 HP rp8400 systems, 25 Microsoft Windows 2000-based HP/Compaq servers and an IBM mainframe.
CareGroup's broad ILM strategy also utilizes tiered storage to support a GE Healthcare PACS, Picture Archiving Communications System. Actively used PACS images are stored on EMC CLARiiON storage connected to Sun servers. After several months, patient images are moved to EMC Centera(TM), where they remain indefinitely to meet regulatory requirements, yet are readily accessible. Dr. Halamka explained, "If we need an older x-ray for comparative analysis, we can move the image in just seconds from Centera to CLARiiON. Centera offers the right combination of responsiveness and high capacity we need for long-term retention."
CareGroup engaged EMC's Services organization for ILM best practices and design, implementation and support for CareGroup's storage infrastructure. "We needed a complete storage solution that includes the hardware, software and services," said Dr. Halamka. "We depend on EMC to provide expert guidance on best practices and to ensure we have a storage configuration that meets our critical requirements for high availability, while enabling us to operate very efficiently."
During the Bio-IT World/Health-IT World Conference and Expo in Boston this week, CareGroup will participate in the following events:
As part of the Ernst & Young Venture Summit, Dr. Halamka participated in a panel discussion on strategies for evaluating technology tools and solutions.
System Architect Michael Passe presented the role of CareGroup's data storage infrastructure in meeting healthcare requirements during the "Building Information Infrastructure for Next Generation Healthcare IT Infrastructure" session.
Today, Dr. Halamka will explore how HIPAA security regulations can be applied effectively in healthcare environments during the "Security and HIPAA Solutions" session.
CareGroup, the healthcare system of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Needham, Mount Auburn Hospital and New England Baptist Hospital, is a system of world-renowned academic medical centers and outstanding community hospitals that are dedicated to providing the best quality care and services to patients in a highly personalized manner.
EMC Corporation is the world leader in products, services and solutions for information storage and management that help organizations extract the maximum value from their information, at the lowest total cost, across every point in the information lifecycle. Information about EMC's products and services can be found at http://www.emc.com/.
EMC, Symmetrix, CLARiiON, Celerra, TimeFinder, and PowerPath are registered trademarks, and Centera, EMC ControlCenter, SnapView, and SAN Copy are trademarks of EMC Corporation. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Contact: Patrick Cooley