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Reaching for healthcare IT value in the cloud

Healthcare News | 2012-03-15

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South Jersey Healthcare (SJH), in Vineland, New Jersey, USA needed a solution that would help it improve the delivery of care, while maintaining a cost model that would not require extensive capital expenditures. The 421-bed, nonprofit healthcare system migrated its healthcare IT infrastructure to a cloud-based model – in which it accesses healthcare IT solutions from “the cloud” – remotely hosted at Siemens at the Healthcare Computing Center in Malvern, Pennsylvania, USA.

Cost control, speed, security, availability, continuity

The decision to adopt the cloud-based model was based on the health system’s requirements for cost predictability; speed to value; and medical-grade security, availability, and business continuity. According to chief financial officer John DiAngelo, the Siemens cloud computing model addressed all of the above. “When you think of medical-grade hosting/cloud computing solutions, no one has been doing it longer than Siemens. They have a level of experience in the field that is just unmatched,” says DiAngelo.

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Seamless transition

SJH went live on its cloud implementation of Soarian® Clinicals in 2008. Other components of the solution, including Soarian Financials, Med Administration Check™, Soarian Scheduling, and Clinical Team, followed soon after. According to SJH chief information officer Tom Pacek, as more of the solution went live, clinicians were amazed by the interoperability between the various modules.1 “With Soarian, users experience one system, so if they’re in the clinical system and need to access Med Administration Check, it’s a seamless transition—even though they’re moving between applications,” says Pacek. “That way, they can focus their energy on one patient at a time, which ultimately helps us provide better care.”

“Our data needs to be available 24/7”

The cloud model has helped the organization to grow its capabilities without adding personnel. Remote automation of software upgrades helps equip SJH with the newest functionality – including capabilities needed to comply with new and changing regulations. Perhaps most important, however, is the impact on application availability. “Our business does not shut down at five o’clock. There is always somebody providing patient care, so our data needs to be available 24/7, 365,” says Pacek. “Siemens understands that, and they provide disaster recovery, backup, and redundancy services through the cloud that help us maintain the high availability on which our doctors, nurses, and staff depend.”

Key Benefits

  • Enhanced cost predictability
  • Seamless module interoperability
  • Improved IT availability
  • Simplified compliance

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1 The outcomes achieved by the Siemens customers described herein were achieved in the customer's unique setting. Since there is no “typical“ hospital and many variables exist (e.g., hospital size, case mix, level of IT adoption), there can be no guarantee that others will achieve the same results.

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