Dublin Dental School opens wide for Lenovo

3 Aug 2006

Dublin Dental School and Hospital (DDSH), the largest dental education and training organisation in the country, is to use Lenovo as its laptop and desktop supplier of choice as part of a general hardware refresh.

In addition to the supply of hardware, Lenovo technicians have also developed images of every PC in the organisation — essentially copies of the operating system and applications on each computer — allowing for improved levels of technical support that DDSH can give to more than 600 users.

The value of the deal has not been disclosed and there are no figures for the exact number of units supplied as a result of the deal but the majority of the systems are desktop PCs because few DDSH staff are mobile and consequently need laptops. Fiona O’Brien, general manager of Lenovo Ireland, said: “This is a very important, very large contract for us in the healthcare sector.”

By upgrading its PC environment with Lenovo ThinkCentre desktops, ThinkPad notebooks and tablets with ThinkVantage Technologies, DDSH expects to reduce PC maintenance costs significantly. According to Luke Feeney, information systems manager at DDSH, the IT department can now give a service level agreement of five minutes’ downtime for any PC in the organisation, whether it is a new PC supplied by Lenovo or an older terminal running Citrix software, for example. “It’s been a significant benefit for our support strategy,” he said. “We would not be able to do that without Lenovo.”

Feeney said the agreement between the DDSH and Lenovo was more akin to a partnership than a contract. “It’s not a fixed contract whereby we don’t have the option to go anywhere else to buy other computers,” he told siliconrepublic.com. “In the past we had been buying computers as required without an overall strategic vision as to how best to purchase desktops and laptops.”

The deal grew out of discussions for a project that DDSH undertook for the Health Service Executive involving clinical data recovery for children with special needs. The project, which also involved Vodafone and the software provider Enovation Solutions, called for tablet PCs with remote connectivity.

Feeney added that Lenovo’s ThinkVantage technology has helped DDSH to make its data more secure so that if a tablet PC goes missing any confidential data on the system can’t be accessed.

The DDSH is the country’s largest dental education and training organisation, providing training for undergraduate and postgraduate students, dental nurses, dental hygienists and dental technicians. It also conducts research into advances in dental healthcare.

By Gordon Smith