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Belgian Hospital Chooses IBM/Mainsoft Portal Solution to Serve Medical Community


University Hospital Ghent Uses .NET Developers to Build Open Standards-Based Virtual Information Service Center on WebSphere Portal

ARMONK, NY and SAN JOSE, CA.- IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Mainsoft Corporation, an independent software and IBM business partner, today announced that the Belgian University Hospital Ghent (UZ Gent) has chosen IBM WebSphere Portal Version 6.0 to develop a self-service virtual information center for its 5,000 staff members, students, healthcare professionals, plus more than 380,000 patients and their families that visit the hospital each year.
Using the .NET-Java interoperability software from Mainsoft, UZ Gent’s .NET development team will use the Visual Studio 2005 development environment to integrate its existing .NET application framework, 15 strategic .NET applications, more than five terabytes of data stored in an Oracle database, and an LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol) repository into a highly secure, role-based WebSphere Portal environment running under Linux. Rather than rewriting the .NET code in Java, Mainsoft for Java EE, Portal Edition will enable UZ Gent’s enterprise development team to cross-compile .NET-based code into Java executables that run locally on WebSphere Portal.

“We have chosen IBM’s open architecture because IBM will allow us to take a platform-independent course in the coming years, enabling us to respond quickly to emerging needs and changing technological circumstances,” said Dr. Bart Sijnave, CIO of UZ Gent. “Thanks to Mainsoft, we can use our enterprise .NET skills and code to develop a platform-independent, user-centric portal environment that best meets our audiences’ diverse needs, with single sign-on, secure access to the information they need as well as maximum accessibility, availability and scalability.”

Expected benefits include:

* Enhanced communications with patients and their families, who will use the portal to locate doctors, request their medical records, make appointments and pay bills online.
* Streamlined collaboration with health professionals who will be able to make referrals, request consultations, transfer patients and access continuing education programs.
* Unique entrance for researchers and students to exchange knowledge and best practices in healthcare.
* Reduced operational expenses associated with managing patient records, information exchanges and billing.

“Customers like UZ Gent who develop enterprise applications with .NET technologies are realizing the powerful benefits of an open standards-based and flexible architecture,” said Larry Bowden, IBM’s vice president of portals and web interaction services. “A WebSphere Portal infrastructure built with Mainsoft software gives customers ultimate flexibility and choice by making it easy to re-use software assets and development skills and extend them into new solutions built within SOA and new Internet technologies such as Web 2.0.”

“Mainsoft’s custom suite of .NET-Java EE software integration tools have established proprietary software systems such as C# 2.0 and Visual Basic® as fully supported languages by WebSphere software,” said Yaacov Cohen, president and CEO of Mainsoft. “We’ve invested $12 million in technology that transforms Java EE into a multi-lingual platform. Enterprises such as UZ Gent can decouple development decisions from their production decisions, using the highly productive Visual Studio IDE for rapid application development and deployments on WebSphere Application Server, WebSphere Portal Server for highly secure, scalable deployments.”


The portal will be built and installed in stages. Completion of the first stage will be capped with the online implementation of the Internet portion of the web portal. After that, UZ Gent will carry out information updates by means of a powerful Web Content Management system. During the second phase, which will be completed by the end of 2008, the electronic patient data exchange and content management will be expanded with an integrated search functionality, access control and single sign-on to existing applications at UZ Gent, transactional services, services for content and knowledge management and security based on eID-technology. The final stage will federate the portal with affiliated hospitals.

Websphere Portal Server is used as the software foundation for building applications and services that reside within a portal, best known as a common entry point for business users who need to share information regardless of where the information resides. IBM portal components are based on a service oriented architecture (SOA), an approach that reuses a company’s existing technology systems to more closely align them with a company’s business goals, helping the company to attain greater efficiencies, cost savings and productivity. For more information, visit:


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