Ospedale di Novara enhances care quality and clinical outcomes

Clinicians gain fast, reliable access to critical data using cloud solutions on IBM Flex System

Published on 18-Oct-2013

"Consolidating 75 existing physical machines to a single server will allow us to cut energy costs by approximately 25 percent. This will help to improve operating margins, and allow us to allocate valuable financial resources to the pursuit of medical innovation." - Andrea Guido, IT Operations Manager, Ospedale di Novara

Customer:
Ospedale di Novara

Industry:
Healthcare

Deployment country:
Italy

Solution:
Flex System, Flex System Manager, Flex System x240, PureSystems, Storage: Storwize V7000, Business Continuity, Cloud Computing, Cloud & Service Management, Enabling Business Flexibility, Energy Efficiency

IBM Business Partner:
Computer Design

Overview

Azienda Ospedaliera “Maggiore della Carità” di Novara (Ospedale di Novara) is a public healthcare institution located in north-west Italy. Focused on medical research (university department) and the provision of specialized surgical procedures, the 780-bed hospital employs more than 2,500 people.

Business need:
Ospedale di Novara wanted to improve efficiency, reduce management and maintenance costs, and boost its flexibility and capacity to respond to changed requirements.

Solution:
Replaced slow, heterogeneous systems with an integrated, virtualized IBM® Flex System™ solution.

Benefits:
Cut physical footprint ensuring more efficiency, reliability and scalability with less administrative effort. Expected to lower energy costs by 25 percent, releasing funds to develop new healthcare technologies.

Case Study

To read an Italian version of this case study, please click here

Azienda Ospedaliera “Maggiore della Carità” di Novara (Ospedale di Novara) is a public healthcare institution located in north-west Italy. Focused on medical research (university department) and the provision of specialized surgical procedures, the 780-bed hospital employs more than 2,500 people.

Promoting cost-efficient and innovative healthcare
As a public and state-funded organization, the hospital adheres to the National Operating Plan for Data Center Rationalization (Piano Operativo Nazionale per la Razionalizzazione dei Data Center), which prescribes strict control of IT spending, smarter and safer use of public data, and administrative efficiency.

The key objective of the IT service is to provide medical and administrative staff with easy, 24/7 access to essential clinical and administrative systems.

Most of the business processes and healthcare information are digitized at Ospedale di Novara. The infrastructure supporting these services was aging, and the hospital IT staff were dedicating an increasing amount of time and resources to routine IT management and maintenance tasks. With 90 physical servers to administer, the IT infrastructure was no longer sufficiently reliable, and unplanned downtime translated into inconvenience for patients and risk of delayed care, as it was at times difficult to access healthcare or administrative information for treatment and research.

Choosing IBM Flex System as the best-of-breed solution
Determined to improve the reliability of the IT infrastructure and the quality of working conditions for staff, Ospedale di Novara embarked on an ambitious IT renewal project.

After working with business partner Computer Design to evaluate a range of options, the hospital decided to transform its infrastructure by taking advantage of the innovative IBM Flex System platform. Ospedale di Novara replaced 75 physical servers with an integrated IBM Flex System platform, which includes five cloud-enabled IBM Flex System x240 compute nodes.

Ospedale di Novara has consolidated what was once a complex and mixed landscape into an integrated, high-performance platform. The solution offers a potential total capacity of 14 compute nodes within a single chassis, making enormous capacity available for future needs. Multiple virtual servers contained within the physical systems allow the hospital to size and optimize each application server in a way that was not possible before, which helps to exploit the total compute capacity in the most cost-effectively manner possible.

Andrea Guido, IT Operations Manager at Ospedale di Novara, says, “Taking advantage of virtualization with IBM Flex System has allowed us to create a private cloud solution for hosting mission-critical data and systems. We can increase and manage capacity easily and quickly as the need arises, allowing us to ensure that we maximize system utilization cost-efficiently.”

Easy, integrated management
For easy management of all compute, storage and networking resources, Ospedale di Novara relies on the IBM Flex System Manager™ node. The Flex System Manager provides a single point of control for the whole landscape, helping IT staff to reduce time spent on administrative and management tasks and focus on higher-value projects.

Andrea Guido adds, “The degree of automation offered by IBM Flex System Manager is so high that the system is virtually ‘self-managed’. With automatic updates and system alerts enabled by IBM Flex System Manager, we are going to save a huge amount of money and time. We are also implementing SkyMonitor, a pay-per-use service offered by Computer Design, which enables us to perform round-the-clock monitoring of our IBM and non-IBM systems, delivering comprehensive and up-to-date views of our entire infrastructure.”

He continues, “Consolidating 75 existing physical machines to a single server will allow us to cut energy costs by approximately 25 percent. This will help to improve operating margins, and allow us to allocate valuable financial resources to the pursuit of medical innovation.”

The digitized medical records themselves must also be stored and managed, and alongside the server refresh Ospedale di Novara reviewed its data storage environment.

To ensure rapid data delivery and security-rich storage featuring protection against data corruption or disaster, Ospedale di Novara deployed an IBM Storwize® V7000 storage system. As well as adding storage capacity, space on existing storage devices can now be accessed as a single virtualized pool through the IBM Storwize V7000. This simplifies the storage landscape by using the IBM Storwize V7000 as the single interface and point of management, and allows Ospedale di Navara to extend the life of existing data capacity, helping to avoid additional storage investments.

What the hospital has gained:

  • Reduction of management costs and energy consumption
  • Reduction of maintenance costs
  • Improvement of infrastructure flexibility
  • Recovery of physical floorspace
  • Better availability of IT resources inside and outside the organisation
  • Better security and availability
  • Better response of IT systems to unforeseeable requests

Setting out towards improved patient care
By moving to a highly virtualized environment with IBM Flex System and IBM Storwize V7000, the hospital has significantly improved the availability and reliability of access to critical clinical data.

Simona Capra, IT Manager at Ospedale di Novara concludes, “IBM Flex System was exactly what we needed: an easy-to-deploy system that helps us to keep operations running smoothly, provide seamless service, and transform care quality and enhance clinical outcomes.”

For more information
To learn more about how IBM can provide expert integrated systems for your business, contact your IBM sales representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit us at ibm.com/puresystems

To learn more about products, services and solutions from Computer Design, please visit cdesign-group.com

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Hardware:
Flex System, Flex System Manager, Flex System x240, Storage, Storage: Storwize V7000

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013. IBM Italia. Circonvallazione Idroscalo. 20090 Segrate - Milano. Produced in Italy. October 2013. IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, IBM Flex System, IBM Flex System Manager, Pure Systems and Storwize 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. 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.