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Stratus releases ′medical grade’ servers to protect critical data

Stratus Technologies : 20 February, 2008  (New Product)
Stratus Technologies has introduced a class of industry-standard ‘medical grade’ servers that provide the reliability healthcare practices need to confidently computerise critical data such as patient charts and financial information.
Stratus medical grade servers are field-proven to be capable of delivering the uninterrupted 24/7 access to digital data and information that ensure quality of care, workflow efficiency, automated decision support, effective management and cost control. In addition to being an ideal application platform, Stratus medical grade servers can support virtualisation initiatives to cut IT overhead by consolidating applications on fewer physical servers.

According to Gartner Healthcare research director Barry R Hieb, MD, 'As healthcare continues the migration to increasing reliance on clinical automation systems, high-availability hardware will become accepted as an infrastructure necessity. Equally important as raw availability will be ease of management and the ability to perform both hardware and software upgrades while the application continues to execute.'

Stratus medical grade servers are designed to prevent failure and downtime. That sets them apart from conventional high-availability servers, which are designed to recover after a failure has occurred and disrupted operations. The specialised architecture, complete component redundancy and self-diagnosing and servicing features of Stratus servers provide uptime reliability in excess of 99.999 percent - less than five minutes per year in continuous operation.

'When all your physicians are relying on electronic charts and documentation, you can't afford to have the system down at all,' said Ryan Bonner, IT manager for the 80-employee Orthopedic Center of St Louis. 'That is the reliability Stratus medical grade ftServer systems provide. We have had nothing but success with it.'

More than 400 Stratus ftServer systems are installed in hospitals, clinics and physician practices worldwide. The company allies with leading software providers and systems integrators, including firms such as Agfa, Sage and JJWild/Meditech, to deliver comprehensive, resilient system solutions to the healthcare industry. Further, as virtualisation technology sweeps through IT data centres everywhere, the need for a trustworthy physical host platform has never been more necessary.

According to Mark R Anderson, chief executive officer of AC Group, 'Healthcare organizations face numerous issues and problems on a daily basis. One area of growing importance is technology uptime when mission-critical clinical applications are deployed. Based on our research, if a system is not available a minimum of 99.99 percent of the time, healthcare organizations will not consider the application reliable enough to use in the future. Based on our published study, Cost of Downtime, every ‘9’ below the 99.99 percent costs the average 300-bed hospital more than $3 million per year and over $1 million for the average 50-provider practice. Given the cost of downtime, we recommend that all of our clients seek out hardware vendors offering a minimum uptime of 99.999 percent.'

The trend in the healthcare industry also increases pressure upon the IT organizations and professional staff charged with supporting computer-based operations.

'A confluence of healthcare market forces-- not the least of which are payer and federal mandates - are causing rapid growth in information technology infrastructures, along with increasing responsibilities assigned to the IT professionals who must manage these infrastructures,' said Alan Gilbert, healthcare practice leader for Stratus. 'But while the infrastructure and responsibilities expand, IT staff size likely remains the same. The reliability and self-managing features of Stratus medical grade servers leave staff free to attend to more urgent demands upon their time.'

Stratus' line of medical grade servers is built with Intel dual- and quad- core processors. All models support applications written for Microsoft Windows and Red Hat Enterprise Linux operating systems. Stratus ftServer systems also support VMware Infrastructure 3.0 virtualisation software.

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