HagaZiekenhuis supports digitized healthcare with IBM technology

Dramatically reducing costs by applying Smarter Computing principles

Published on 04-Jan-2013

"BPSolutions and IBM have helped us put in place the ideal foundation for a host of new developments as Haga moves towards truly digitalized healthcare. Innovative virtualization technologies help us exploit available resources to the full, while keeping costs low and availability high." - Jan van Rijn, CIO, HagaZiekenhuis

Customer:
HagaZiekenhuis

Industry:
Healthcare

Deployment country:
Netherlands

Solution:
Business Continuity, Business Resiliency, High Availability , Smarter Computing, Virtualization, Virtualization - Server, Virtualization - Storage

IBM Business Partner:
BPSolutions, SAP

Overview

HagaZiekenhuis (Haga) is the leading clinical teaching and general hospital for residents of The Hague and surrounding areas in the Netherlands. Employing approximately 4,000 people, including 250 doctors and 700 nurses, Haga operates three hospital locations and two external clinics, with the main site in Leyenburg housing the emergency and intensive care departments. The organization also operates the only non-academic children’s hospital in the Netherlands.

Business need:
Dutch healthcare provider HagaZiekenhuis needed to replace its aging, partly obsolete IT infrastructure to make its goal of becoming a truly digitized hospital a reality. Daily unplanned outages and spiraling support costs made finding a new solution a top priority.

Solution:
Haga now relies on a fully virtualized, mirrored solution based on IBM® Power Systems™ and System x® server technology, supported by IBM System Storage® devices and Tivoli® software.

Benefits:
Cut maintenance costs by 20 percent and floor space requirements by 40 percent. Eliminates unplanned outages, with just one planned eight-hour maintenance window needed per month. Enables the IT team to manage a 300 percent growth in transaction volumes without increasing headcount.

Case Study

To read a Dutch version of this case study, click here.

HagaZiekenhuis (Haga) is the leading clinical teaching and general hospital for residents of The Hague and surrounding areas in the Netherlands. Employing approximately 4,000 people, including 250 doctors and 700 nurses, Haga operates three hospital locations and two external clinics, with the main site in Leyenburg housing the emergency and intensive care departments. The organization also operates the only non-academic children’s hospital in the Netherlands.

Developing a plan for digitalization
In 2009, Haga embarked on an ambitious project valued at over 400 million USD to rebuild and renew its facilities based on a patient-centric concept. As part of this project, the organization developed a plan to become fully digitized by 2015, and needed to refresh its aging, partly obsolete IT systems to realize this goal.

Jan van Rijn, CIO at HagaZiekenhuis, explains: “Our existing IT systems simply could not support our aspirations to become a fully digitized hospital. Some of the equipment was up to ten years old, causing us to experience daily unplanned outages and escalating maintenance costs. As a cost-conscious, 24/7 healthcare provider, we urgently needed to find an alternative.”

“We put together a detailed list of requirements,” says Raymond van den Berg, IT Director. “The solution needed to fall within a strict budget, offer the capacity to accommodate at least five years’ of expected growth, be manageable by our existing IT team and support new technologies such as virtualization. We knew that finding a solution that satisfied all these criteria was going to be a challenge.”

Choosing IBM and BPSolutions
Following a closed tender, Haga selected a proposal from IBM Premier Business Partner BPSolutions B.V. based on IBM technology.

“We chose the IBM solution because we felt it best met our requirements, while offering the optimal price-performance ratio of the options we considered,” comments Jan van Rijn. “We have a long-standing relationship with BPSolutions, and as the fact that they were awarded the title of ‘IBM Business Partner of the Year’ in 2011 shows, they have in-depth technical expertise when it comes to IBM technology.”

Rapid, easy deployment
Working with BPSolutions, Haga implemented a mirrored solution at its primary datacenter within the main Leyenburg hospital site, and a secondary datacenter 30 kilometers away. The organization chose to deploy a total of six IBM Power® 750 Express servers running IBM AIX®, six IBM System x3850 X5 servers, and thirteen virtualized IBM System x3650 class servers. The configuration is split between the two datacenters in an active-active configuration.

“As a hospital, we simply cannot bring our systems down for any significant period of time, so one of the key challenges we presented to BPSolutions was migrating to the new solution within a very strict timescale,” explains Raymond van den Berg. “We are delighted to say that they delivered the infrastructure within the allocated downtime windows and budget.”

Selecting the right platform
Haga runs its business-critical suite of SAP applications and its IBM DB2® database within the IBM Power Systems environment, fully virtualized with IBM PowerVM® software and clustered with IBM PowerHA® for high availability. The organization has also consolidated its Intel workloads to a virtualized System x platform.

“The IBM Power Systems platform offers an ideal scalable and flexible foundation for our vital SAP environment,” says Jan van Rijn. “We take advantage of IBM DB2 compression on some machines, offering us a maximum gain in disk space of up to 50 percent. IBM PowerHA clustering enables us to fail over from one server to another instantly in the event of a hardware problem. As a result, we enjoy 24/7 availability, allowing us to support round-the-clock healthcare.”

Raymond van den Berg continues: “For our Intel workloads, such as Microsoft Windows servers, we now use a virtualized System x platform. Choosing the IBM solution enables us to match workloads to the optimal platform while benefiting from a consistent set of management tools. We can optimize performance without adding too much complexity, which is a key advantage. In fact, we have tripled the number of transactions or users our infrastructure can support without needing to add to the size of our IT team.”

Ensuring business continuity
Haga replaced various storage environments with a centralized solution based on IBM System Storage N Series systems virtualized with MetroCluster software, along with two IBM System Storage TS7610 ProtecTIER® Deduplication Appliance Express devices used to implement backup without tape. As a result of the project, Haga has succeeded in integrating siloed storage into a single, virtualized environment which is highly redundant and available with efficient backup and recovery managed via Tivoli Storage Manager.

“The benefits of replacing our existing dual backup environment with a single, integrated storage solution are swiftly becoming apparent,” says Jan van Rijn. “Deploying the fully virtualized IBM solution has made it possible for us to build redundancy into every part of our infrastructure, from servers to storage. This means that, in the event of a disaster, we can be confident that operations can continue without interruption, and essential data is not lost.”

Boosting efficiency
By migrating to a fully virtualized IBM infrastructure, Haga has succeeded in reducing the physical size of its UNIX infrastructure by more than 50 percent, and its Intel infrastructure by more than 70 percent. This has yielded significant floor space savings for the organization. The new solution also offers lower support costs, with IBM Global Technology Services® providing ongoing maintenance.

“Virtualization enables us to maximize our utilization of resources,” comments Raymond van den Berg. “This, combined with the highly compact design of the Power 750 and System x servers, results in a 40 percent reduction in floor space requirements, translating into major savings and giving us vital headroom to grow into in the future. Our support costs are now also 20 percent lower than they used to be, and with IBM Global Technology Services monitoring the systems 24/7, issues are often resolved before we have even noticed them!”

Maximizing stability
Moving to a high-availability IBM infrastructure has enabled Haga to eliminate the unplanned daily outages that it had previously suffered.

“Whereas previously our IT teams were tied up with dealing with unplanned downtime every day, we now have a single, scheduled eight-hour maintenance window once a month – a huge improvement,” says Jan van Rijn. “This allows us to shift our focus to more valuable tasks, and meet our goal of supplying IT as a commodity, raising the organization’s productivity as a whole. For example, by using logical partitioning [LPAR] technology, we can run testing and development environments side-by-side with systems in production without worrying about them affecting each other, which is a major advantage.”

He concludes: “BPSolutions and IBM have helped us put in place the ideal foundation for a host of new developments as Haga moves towards truly digitalized healthcare. Innovative virtualization technologies help us exploit available resources to the full, while keeping costs low and availability high. We feel confident that the IBM solution will accommodate our growth over the next five years, as Haga enters an exciting new phase.”

Smarter Computing: The IT Infrastructure of a Smarter Planet
Deploying a mixed IBM infrastructure enables Haga to match workloads to the optimal platform, choosing highly scalable, ultra reliable Power Systems architecture to support business-critical SAP applications, while cost-effectively consolidating Intel workloads to a virtualized System x environment. As a result of the consolidation, Haga enjoys a 40 percent decrease in floor space requirements, and a 20 percent cut in maintenance costs. The IBM solution supports up to three times the number of transactions and users compared to the previous infrastructure. Due to the simplified administration and easy manageability of the IBM solution, Haga can benefit from this increase in capacity without increasing the size of its IT team – enabling the company to do more with the same level of resources.

Products and services used

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013. IBM Nederland BV, Johan Huizingalaan 765, P.O. Box 9999, 1066 VH Amsterdam, Netherlands. Produced in the Netherlands. December 2012. IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, AIX, DB2, Global Technology Services, Power, Power Systems, PowerHA, PowerVM, ProtecTIER, System Storage, System x and Tivoli are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the web at: www.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml. IBM and BPSolutions B.V. are separate companies and each is responsible for its own products. Neither IBM nor BPSolutions B.V. makes any warranties, express or implied, concerning the other’s products. Intel, Intel logo, Intel Inside, Intel Inside logo, Intel Centrino, Intel Centrino logo, Celeron, Intel Xeon, Intel SpeedStep, Itanium, and Pentium are trademarks or registered trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the United States and other countries. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds in the United States, other countries, or both. Microsoft, Windows, Windows NT, and the Windows logo are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both. UNIX is a registered trademark of The Open Group in the United States and other countries. This document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. The client examples cited are presented for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance results may vary depending on specific configurations and operating conditions. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided.