Hospitals have put a lot of effort into updating their IT systems and infrastructure to support electronic health records (EHR), however, there are many other places in the hospital where upgrading technologies can improve the patient experience. Vertiv experts identified three such areas where today’s hospitals can benefit from increased attention to and investment in their IT infrastructure:
- Imaging Suite: Medical scans and images are benefitting from technology advancements such as 4K resolution that provide stunning, revealing detail. But these improvements also require high data transfer and low latency to operate as intended. Some legacy infrastructure equipment, such as KVM switches that enable easy access to numerous files and servers across multiple workstations, aren’t equipped to work with today’s high-resolution images and video. Newer KVM switches enable higher resolution imaging. Doctors and surgeons should have access to the same high-definition images and videos as those used in the broadcast industry.
- Nursing Stations: Many hospitals rely on building UPS systems and generators to provide backup power throughout the facility. That’s fine in theory, but if that centralized UPS system fails, it can be crippling to the routine – and often urgent – work that occurs throughout the hospital. Nursing stations are especially vulnerable because they rely heavily on IT systems for patient status updates, medication management, and treatment schedules. A local UPS system, such as the Vertiv Desktop UPS, with extended battery time, can deliver redundancy and ensure availability of those critical IT systems.
- Nurses’ stations also frequently rely on remote desktop switches to access and manage data, but often those IP based tools are rendered useless in the event of a loss of network connectivity. For this reason, a KVM switch, IP based or on their desktop, capable of out-of-band management is a smart choice. In fact, out-of-band remote management is critical across the hospital. Too often today, system maintenance needlessly disrupts life-critical activities when a simple serial console server or IP based KVM can allow IT staff to perform routine maintenance remotely without disrupting the more important, patient-focused work of doctors and nurses.
- Billing Department: Medical billing and coding professionals often switch frequently between sensitive private patient data and non-sensitive applications. For example, while accessing a patient’s file, they may open an internet browser to search for information about an insurance provider or ICD-10 codes. Without the right equipment, this can create a vulnerability a skilled hacker could exploit. Secure switches, such as the Vertiv Cybex SC900 Series Secure Desktop KVM Switch, are traditionally used in government applications and allow safe switching between sensitive and non-sensitive platforms, and they are finding new uses in health systems and wherever privacy concerns exist.
Medical systems have several ways they can improve privacy, redundancy and the patient experience by investing in their IT infrastructure. For more information on how today’s hospitals and healthcare systems can better leverage their IT infrastructure, visit Vertiv.com or download the Vertiv white paper on “Enabling Reliable Digital Hospitals.”