Hospitals in USA and United Kingdom prove success of Novell's one-Net-for-health care concept

New Orleans 05 February 2001Novell Inc., a provider of Net services software, has established Novell Healthcare, a new practice from Novell Consulting which combines Novell's Net services software with strategic industry alliances, education and consulting services, to address the more than $1 trillion United States health care industry. Novell Healthcare will provide organisations with a single unified global network, one Net for health care, giving health care companies the power to simplify and accelerate their move from the old, traditional way of doing business to increase the efficiency of hospital staff, reduce administrative costs, and ultimately enhance the quality of service and health care.

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Novell Healthcare is aimed at giving organisations the power to address today's challenges including managing new industry regulations like Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), ever-changing relationships with managed care providers and consumers, upgrading infrastructure, and Internet integration. Novell Net services software provides the infrastructure for health care organisations both to serve customers better and to improve the bottom line. Alex Salehi, vice president of Novell Professional Services commented: "In conjunction with our partners, Novell is targeting three key areas: enterprise management, Electronic Data Integration, and helping companies address pressing government regulations like HIPAA."

Novell Net services software is deployed at health care organisations all over the world, enabling them to consolidate and manage their networks. This has improved their bottom line, helping reduce traditional high costs of managing multiple systems and redundant patient information. Anna-Leberge Hospital Centre, Capital Region Healthcare, Children's Hospital Oakland, Hartford Hospital, Health First, Metropolitan Health, Rush Presbyterian at St. Luke's Medical Center, among others, have increased cost-savings by making their IT staff more efficient, and allowing doctors and nurses to be more productive by reducing paperwork requirements. Other examples of successful implementation are the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Health System in the US and Pinderfields and Pontefract Hospitals National Health Service (NHS) Trust in the United Kingdom.

"University of Alabama at Birmingham Health System is pleased with the eDirectory Net Services which Novell has integrated into our health care system", commented Martha Griffin, End User Support Manager, University of Alabama Health System Information Services. "Our ability to succeed depends on secure, ultra-fast, and government-compliant systems infrastructure. Standardising on Novell technology has helped us improve our business processes, physician productivity, and delivery of patient care. Through the use of tools like Novell's ZENworks, GroupWise, NetWare and NetWare Cluster Services, and BorderManager we have become very efficient at supporting more with less." UAB Health System is an operating corporation with multiple member entities. It is listed as one of the top 100 hospitals in the United States.

Pinderfields and Pontefract NHS Trust and NHS Direct are piloting a scheme to help patients stay at home. By providing portable monitoring equipment, the patient can measure his or her own pulse, oxygen levels and blood pressure which is then transmitted over the telephone to NHS Direct, who will alert the support team if necessary. Specialist nursing care is also provided to help the patient remain at home. Peter Kidd, head of Information Technology at Pinderfields and Pontefract Hospitals NHS Trust, commented: "Utilizing Novell's Net services software, we have been able to deliver valuable on-line services that enable our staff to significantly improve the level of health care for patients in the district."

"We were one of the first NHS Trusts to deliver components at all levels of the Electronic Patient Record mandate, like telemedicine applications, and we are also the only NHS Trust to successfully implement direct patient referrals where General Practitioners can make direct bookings on-line for routine surgery. We chose Novell Net services software because it supports our zero-tolerance networking objective of keeping all IT services available and effective for all users. Novell technology is Internet-aware, integrates with all our systems and supports open standards. In my view, a Windows NT infrastructure does not have the coherence to meet our objectives", Mr. Kidd added. Pinderfields and Pontefract Hospitals NHS Trust employs over 5000 staff with beds for in excess of 1100 patients at multiple locations in West Yorkshire. Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield is a regional specialist for plastic surgery and the treatment of burns.

Novell is partnering with PricewaterhouseCoopers to combine health care consulting expertise with best-of-breed products to deliver comprehensive health care solutions to customers worldwide. According to Andrew Ward, PricewaterhouseCoopers partner-in-charge of the health care consulting practice, the combination of PricewaterhouseCoopers' health care industry expertise and Novell's Net services software will give health care companies an end-to-end solution to provide them a more operationally efficient environment for processing health care claims, while securing the privacy and confidentiality of the information under their control. Leveraging Novell Healthcare practice and strategic alliances with industry partners, Novell is providing core expertise in security and IT assessments with focus on the advantages of directory-enabled infrastructure for security and management.


Leslie Versweyveld

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