HSE to centralise all medical data in new National Health Data Centre


6 Jul 2009

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The Health Service Executive (HSE) has awarded Eircom a €2m contract to house all key systems for HSE hospitals, offices and clinics nationwide.

The National Health Data Centre will house all key systems for HSE hospitals and health service offices nationwide, including hospital clinical applications, administrative and email systems.

The centre will also be home to the central data repository for the HSE’s upcoming national medical imaging project.

The new National Health Data Centre will be housed in Eircom’s new next-generation data centre at Clonshaugh, which it leases from Digital Realty Trust. Eircom has invested over €100m in the new data centre.

While the HSE has previously co-located individual applications in data centres, the national data centre initiative marks the start of a rollout of key national ICT programmes for the HSE.

The National Health Data Centre will assist the HSE in its drive to gain better efficiency, value and business support from the ICT systems that facilitate delivery of health and social services to more than 4.3 million people in Ireland.

"The success of the HSE ICT Strategy depends on the provision of a robust platform and architecture, upon which critical services can be better managed,” says Gerard Hurl, National ICT Director, HSE.

“The establishment of the National Health Data Centre in partnership with Eircom is significant as it not only provides a best-in-class platform to help us to deliver on this objective, but also meets our cost and efficiency targets”,.

The National Health Data Centre also aligns to the National Health Network provided by Eircom, which delivers LAN-speed bandwidth to HSE locations and connects them back to the Data Centre.

The National Health Network and Data Centre will together facilitate the consolidation of applications and in the longer-term the delivery of shared ICT services nationally.

“Eircom’s 120,000 sq foot Clonshaugh facility doubles the company’s data centre capacity and links with Eircom’s existing data centres in Dublin (Citywest and Crown Alley) over Eircom’s high-speed next-generation IP network,” explains Colm Hoban, director, Corporate Markets, Eircom.

“The HSE joins a growing customer list, including the Department of Transport (Motor Tax Online), Phonovation, AXA Insurance, Hostopia and other key customers operating in key sectors such as health, education and technology. Eircom anticipates further growth in data centre services.”

Eircom’s team worked closely with the HSE National ICT Directorate and key hardware suppliers to the HSE to migrate the key systems in scope, to the National Health Data Centre.

The data centre is equipped with the latest power, cooling, fire suppression and biometric security measures to protect customers’ systems, including those using new, power-hungry hardware such as blade servers. The centre has been designed to be energy efficient, minimising power consumption by using the ambient external temperature to assist in cooling.

In addition to co-location services, Eircom’s “carrier neutral” data centre at Clonshaugh provides delivers managed services, including managed ICT security and managed SAP.

By John Kennedy

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