Regional Medical Center (The Med) is a healthcare provider of efficient, quality healthcare for individuals throughout a five-state region within 150-miles of Memphis, Tennessee. Funded by government dollars from its base in Shelby County, The Med found itself pinched when new budget restrictions took hold — and its aging archive infrastructure kept racking up expenses.
The primary concern revolved around the growing archival
demands of its picture archiving and communication systems (PACS). Because many of The Med's patients are self-paying individuals who receive infrequent, often one-time, services, the most cost-effective way to handle their related medical images is through long-term storage. However, the replicated EMC Centera storage environment that supported this function was always running out of disk space — requiring The Med to purchase additional disk arrays that took up valuable and limited data center floor space. When its capital budget took a hit, The Med sought a less costly, more efficient long-term solution.
Finding an appropriate solution meant taking into consideration the privacy regulations and security requirements associated with healthcare information, as well as specific departmental needs. "Radiology owned the PACS," explains Brad Harrison, executive director of IT at The Med. "Because they're on the front line, they needed to know that they could still get fast access to their studies." At the same time, IT, which managed the related PACS storage and
archive, had to make sure the solution met its demands and delivered a more manageable and affordable way to plan for future growth.