Solving healthcare’s data management conundrum

  • Healthcare organizations require more efficient data storage architectures.

  • Converged storage helps healthcare organizations improve information access and security during migration.

Silos mean separation, and that’s the last thing healthcare organizations need in an era of information-driven, integrated care. Converged storage offers healthcare organizations a more efficient storage architecture that integrates and protects data during migration, while helping to reduce costs and improve care. Implemented correctly, converged storage improves access to information by delivering data quickly from a centralized, hybrid storage environment that mixes platforms and vendors.

Converged storage helps healthcare facilities keep up with the constant innovation happening at the storage layer and promises the end of “information silos” and expensive professional services-led migration efforts.

Fear of the past

Many organizations have chosen to remain with the status quo rather than migrate critical files from their existing legacy storage environments to new platforms. It has often seemed like the lesser of two evils, given that cumbersome, risky, and often expensive migration options were — until recently — the only ones available:

  • Allocate in-house resources to perform the migration: The classic DIY approach since hospital IT often lacks the luxury of assigning extra resources for these labor-intensive, lengthy migration efforts.
  • Turn to application providers: This means hospital IT works with multiple applications on separate projects and pays a premium for each migration, since application providers normally charge by service model, at an hourly rate.
  • Outsource to professional service organizations: Often the most expensive alternative, traditional professional services efforts mean healthcare facilities must invite a third party into their data center with customized tools that are being implemented for the first time. The risk and cost associated with this strategy is significant.

Throwing money and labor hours at data migration, while extending expensive service-level agreements required to support often unreliable legacy platforms (that may be well beyond life expectancy), is a costly process.

The path forward

Now, healthcare organizations have a best-of-breed option available for streamlined, cost-effective migrations. Seven10 Storage Software addresses migration challenges with a medical gateway solution that transitions files and records from legacy storage platforms without interrupting the patient care processes or breaking budgets.

Seven10’s bundled, perpetual-use pricing model offers both migration plus go-forward data management. The software allows organizations to quickly decommission legacy storage devices while simultaneously modernizing healthcare infrastructure with the adoption of new and more cost-effective storage strategies.

The approach leverages AT&T’s Synaptic Storage as a Servicesm (STaaS) Data Migration Services and Seven10’s Storfirst Gateway’s low-touch data migration. The integrated offering transitions data from a range of legacy storage environments, including EMC Centera, NetApp StorageGrid, HP MAS, IBM GMAS, Oracle SAMFS – as well as any existing NAS platform, cloud gateway, or file system.

The AT&T-Seven10 solution also provides a standard SMB/CIFS or NFS presentation layer for immediate access to AT&T’s cloud storage platform. Storfirst supports HIPAA compliance by enforcing such policies as encryption, file-locking, lifespan, auditing, tiering, and others. With AT&T and Seven10, healthcare organizations can retire and/or refresh their current storage architecture by delivering software-driven, secure data migrations that guarantee against data loss.

The benefits of integration

The AT&T-Seven10 integration provides immediate cost savings and instant access to next-generation storage, while removing vendor lock-in forever. With the Seven10 and AT&T STaaS solution, healthcare organizations accomplish:

  • Unification of the storage layer to improve capacity utilization and simplify management.
  • Non-disruptive migration with seamless transition from old technology to new, evolved solutions.
  • Multi-petabyte scale reduces the need for multiple “management appliances.”
  • A self-protecting architecture facilitates compliance adherence.

Change is happening faster than ever in IT, and the constant churn of innovation means there is a lot of “old iron” out there containing billions of healthcare records that make it difficult to modernize patient care.

The path to next-generation storage shouldn’t be blocked by proprietary storage that offers no way out. Working with AT&T, Seven10 enables healthcare organizations to safely and cost-effectively meet data migration and go-forward management challenges without risking data loss or downtime – all while satisfying government mandates and regulations.

What solution do you see healthcare organizations putting in place to pave a path forward?


Bobby Moulton, is CEO of Seven10 Storage Software, the leading developer of seamless data migration and cloud-based Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) software. He wrote this guest post for the Networking Exchange Blog.


Bobby Moulton President and CEO Seven10 About Bobby