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University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to Improve Patient Care With IBM Storage Solutions


Health System Replaces HP Storage With IBM TotalStorage DS8300 and DS6800 to Support Information on Demand Business Environment.

ARMONK, NY, 21 Dec 2005: IBM today announced that the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) has completed the first stage of a massive technology infrastructure overhaul that includes the installation of IBM’s breakthrough enterprise and midrange storage systems.
The latest information on demand storage infrastructure builds on UPMC’s current electronic health record strategy and is designed to play a significant role in improving the quality of patient care, increasing IT resource capacity, improving data reliability and further reducing administration costs.
UPMC, a five billion-dollar organization, is the premier health system in western Pennsylvania and one of the most renowned academic medical centers in the United States, employing 40,000 people, comprising 19 hospitals and a network of other care sites. UPMC previously relied on an HP-based storage network, but needed a comprehensive storage solution that would consolidate its technology infrastructure.
UPMC worked closely with IBM to create a tiered storage environment. The first tier of the revitalized infrastructure consists of three IBM TotalStorage DS8300 storage servers, with two systems located at the main data center and one system at a remote disaster recovery site approximately four kilometers away. The DS8300, offering high-capacity storage, is responsible for the organization’s most critical systems, including electronic medical records, the migration of management materials, and human resources payroll. Additionally, UPMC deployed two IBM TotalStorage DS6800 storage servers as the second-tier for midrange applications, as well as other development and testing environments. The new infrastructure takes up less than half the floor space previously occupied by their old storage systems and includes more capacity.
The IBM storage systems provide UPMC with improved, consistent performance and better Electronic Health Record System response time. The DS8300 has shown performance increases that are six times faster than the previous storage system. Electronic Health Record System response time and performance is critical, especially with respect to electronic prescriptions. Manual written prescriptions are one cause of medical errors due to their lack of clarity. Improved system performance and response times make the use of the automated system easier and more convenient, encouraging doctors to forgo the use of traditional paper prescription pads, and reducing prescription errors.
“UPMC has always been seen as an innovator in the health care industry, and we continue to challenge ourselves to deploy the most cutting edge technology available,” said Joe Furmanski, lead technology architect at UPMC. “IBM storage is a driving force in helping us maintain our technology leadership, providing advanced hardware such as the DS8300 and DS6800. With our new storage systems, we get outstanding reliability, maintainability, performance and capacity, allowing us to provide the optimum in patient care.”
“Providing top-notch healthcare quality is a constant concern, and we recognize UPMC’s need to implement technology to effectively benefit patient care and to improve utilization of medical research information,” said Kristie Bell, vice president, storage systems at IBM. “This is just one example of how we consistently work closely with our customers to help them create an on demand environment and keep them one step ahead of others in their industry.”
As the storage consolidation project continues, including the implementation of IBM SAN Volume Controller and IBM TotalStorage Productivity Center, UPMC expects that the majority of idle storage will be eliminated. As a result, UPMC anticipates that it will centrally manage its data utilization so that the annual overall storage growth rate can be cut in half, down to 25 percent.
Along with IBM TotalStorage DS8300 and IBM TotalStorage DS6800, UPMC utilizes IBM Tivoli Storage Manager for backup, and IBM TotalStorage Productivity Center solutions for disk, data, fabric and replication. The organization is consolidating its operating system onto AIX, Windows and Linux and also has plans to implement IBM TotalStorage SAN Volume Controller virtualization software in early 2006.

About IBM
IBM is the world’s largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key IBM Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that help enable customers, large and small, to take full advantage of the new era of e-business on demand. For more information about IBM, visit

About UPMC
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