Ultrasound Care is a specialist ultrasound practice in Sydney with a team of 50-60 people providing diagnostic imaging services to women of all ages and backgrounds. Operating from eight locations across Sydney and using the latest ultrasound technologies, Ultrasound Care’s all-female team of specialist obstetricians and gynaecologists, sonographers and counsellors provide a professional and caring approach that has resulted in the practice establishing a leadership position in its field.
Ultrasound Care offers a range of diagnostic and counselling services including obstetric ultrasound and prenatal diagnosis, offering parents amazing 3D and 4D images of their new born baby from as early as 10 weeks gestation.
Ultrasound Care has grown significantly in the past few years, expanding from four to eight sites across Sydney, and the advances in ultrasound technology during that time have seen a dramatic increase in the requirements for network bandwidth and storage infrastructure.
THE COMBINATION OF BUSINESS GROWTH AND TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENTS WAS CAUSING A STRAIN ON OPERATIONS AND REQUIRED A RETHINK ON THE ORGANISATION’S NETWORKING AND SERVER INFRASTRUCTURE.
Ultrasound Care’s ageing server infrastructure was at near maximum capacity and utilisation, and at risk to significant failure. However, due to compliance and governance requirements through a shared interest in the business with the Sydney Adventist Hospital (the SAN), Ultrasound Care had to maintain an on-premise server environment in a dedicated data room at the hospital.
One of the first decisions Ultrasound Care made was to sign up to a managed services agreement with Viatek, after more than a decade of using Viatek for more ad hoc IT services and support. That’s given Ultrasound Care greater consistency and predictability in pricing, which has assisted the organisation in its short and long-term budgeting and financial planning.
Viatek also facilitated the migration of Ultrasound Care’s 60 users from its domain provider’s POP3 email service to a more feature-rich, user-friendly and secure Microsoft Office 365 cloud environment.
A relocation of its Greenwich site and a move from copper to fibre connections was the catalyst for Ultrasound Care to adopt Viatek’s hyper scale managed MPLS connectivity service, providing access to high capacity, carrier grade network and uncontended bandwidth. The speed with which Ultrasound Care was able to bring its new site up to full operation and the scalability the MPLS was able to provide to handle the data demands across the network made it the ideal replacement choice for all sites, replacing the existing managed copper MPLS network that Ultrasound Care had been using.
The speed of integration and provisioning on the new managed MPLS network also gave Ultrasound Care the confidence to proceed with its server upgrade project. The project was 12 months in the planning, owing to the complexity and specific requirements of the application environment that needed to be supported (which included Intelerad, Kestral, Medinexus and HealthLink), and an assessment of the potential vendor solutions that could provide the scalability, security, reliability and flexibility needed.
Viatek implemented a HPE environment comprising ProLiant DL380 Gen10 servers with an HPE SAN array for scalable and high-performance storage. Network attached storage (NAS) for on-premise backup and restoration, supported by replication to Microsoft Azure cloud for off-site redundancy. Asa result, Ultrasound Care was able to consolidate eight physical servers down to two running on a virtualised VMware platform, and dynamic load balancing which enables any upgrades or hardware replacements to take place with zero downtime on the systems. That will allow Ultrasound Care to install additional storage to meet future growth, as well as replace any failing or at-risk hardware modules without impacting on the organisation’s operation or access to vital patient data. Effectively, the new HPE infrastructure is now providing Ultrasound Care with greater visibility on the way it stores data and the same elasticity and availability of cloud-based services, at the same time meeting its compliance requirements for maintaining on-premise server infrastructure.
With Viatek’s managed service, Ultrasound Care can operate without needing to maintain any in-house IT expertise, which means its team can focus on providing the best possible care to patients and the best possible service to its referring doctors.
Jo believes there is going to be continually growing data requirements with the increasing availability and demand for high resolution 3D and 4D scans. It now has the stable, scalable server environment and networking in place to continue to adopt the latest in ultrasound imaging technologies and diagnostic practices, and to offer unique and differentiated services to its patients.
Ultrasound’s virtualised HPE server infrastructure also gives Ultrasound Care the agility to adapt to the changing needs of its business as it continues to grow and evolve in the future.