IBM PACS-in storage innovation at Memorial Hospital

Armonk 02 March 2007Memorial Hospital has implemented an IBM tiered storage solution in conjunction with McKesson's Horizon Medical Imaging picture archiving and communication system (PACS) to help clinicians access patients' medical information faster, easier and more securely. In the short time the system has been operational, Memorial Hospital reports that maintenance costs have been reduced significantly, and physicians are also able to more quickly access medical images.

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Based in South Bend, Indiana, Memorial Hospital is a non-profit, 526-bed regional referral centre for cardiac, cancer, childbirth, emergency medicine and rehabilitation services. Priding itself as an expert in innovation and providing high quality care, the hospital continues to focus on the importance of strategic IT investments as a means to deliver improved patient care.

Memorial Hospital was looking to update its in-house PACS system with a storage infrastructure that would allow patient X-rays to be stored and quickly accessed by physicians. It selected McKesson's Horizon Medical Imaging picture archiving and communication system to be integrated with IBM's powerful storage systems. In working with McKesson, the hospital selected IBM over systems from EMC to build a state-of-the-art, three-tier PACS platform.

"In our business, it is a necessity to be able to access patients' medical information quickly at the click of a button", stated Steve Huffman, director of information technology, Memorial Hospital. "The PACS solution supported by IBM's storage technology has allowed for exceptional speed, scalability and reliability in storing all of our patients' medical images. The combination of the positive technology performance and phenomenally accommodating services support that IBM offered has allowed us to reach our goal of providing scaleable, high-speed access to patient critical information."

Memorial Hospital has deployed the IBM System Storage DS4800 for the first tier, storing up to 12,4 terabytes of mission critical data. Physicians have the ability to quickly access images on the first tier for up to 18 months. The second tier is comprised of the IBM System Storage N5200, which is designed to help the hospital scale its storage infrastructure to keep pace with growth, as well as maintain availability and productivity through upgrades and future migration to a remote data centre.

The N5200 is designed to deliver high-end enterprise storage and data management value with midrange affordability. Both the DS4800 and N5200 are the storage platforms for the McKesson PACS system. The third and final tier is the IBM System Storage 3584 Tape Library. Backing up all data in the entire hospital, the tape library serves as off-site storage for disaster recovery purposes.

"IBM is committed to working with its clients to deliver the best possible innovative solutions to help address their individual goals", stated IBM's Barry Rudolph, vice president, storage systems. "With Memorial Hospital, they came to us looking for a solution to a specific problem. We collaborated with them and McKesson in order to create an original, tailored storage infrastructure that successfully caters to their needs so they can better serve their patients."

In addition, Memorial Hospital has come to rely on IBM Tivoli Storage Manager for back-up and archival. It is also running an IBM Enterprise Storage Server and four IBM System p5 570 servers. More IBM health care news can be found in this VMW issue's article IBM and Convergence CT team to provide clinical data warehousing for health care and life sciences.


Leslie Versweyveld

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