Coastal Medical Chief Information Officer Mice Chen faced what he calls “the moment of truth.” The healthcare provider’s IT team encountered challenges in servicing a growing number of patients, managing multiple service and data systems needed to support the work of the organization and planning for management’s long-term business growth strategy.
Founded in 1995, Coastal Medical is a physician-owned and governed accountable care organization (ACO) that now has over 20 locations across Rhode Island, servicing well over 120,000 patients.
Quality of patient care, access to care and cost optimization are critical business imperatives. Maintaining these things and running mission-critical eClinicalWorks electronic health records (EHR) require robust, reliable data technologies. When leaders of Coastal Medical decided it was time to expand their services to a lot more patients, Chen knew his IT team needed to take a new approach.
“We knew our legacy infrastructure approach was not sustainable in the long-term,” said Chen.
While researching new technologies, Chen built a mental blueprint for replacing Coastal Medical’s existing legacy infrastructure. That’s when he discovered hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI), an IT framework that combines storage, computing and networking into a single platform. He knew that was the way to modernize the IT system’s foundation and manage future growth.
[Read the case study: Coastal Medical Moves Mission-Critical eClinicalWorks EHR to Nutanix]
HCI would give Coastal Medical the ability to create pools of shared data processing and storage resources, while simplifying and speeding up everything necessary to maintain the system. Chen saw that HCI would also shrink the amount of space needed for IT equipment. This would enable his IT to operate like a hybrid cloud system, to easily scale its private cloud and tap into public cloud services whenever that made business sense.
“In healthcare, people usually take a conservative approach to avoid uncertainties that could potentially jeopardize patient care or our business operations,” said Chen.