HP Infrastructure Expands Private Cloud for Behavioral Health Network

 
 
By Brian T. Horowitz  |  Posted 2013-02-01 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

HP networking infrastructure is helping ITX Enterprises to expand its virtual private cloud nationwide to a network of behavioral health professionals.

ITX Enterprises, a virtual desktop service provider for behavioral health professionals, plans to expand its network of caregivers nationally through a private cloud managed by Hewlett-Packard.

The private cloud will allow behavioral health professionals in the field to log in to virtual desktops and eliminate paperwork, according to HP, which is providing the hardware and support for ITX under its Converged Infrastructure line.

ITX Enterprises, based in Kaysville, Utah, hosts a behavioral health records-management system called Pro-Filer by UniCare Systems. A consortium of 500 behavioral health professionals in Utah currently uses the platform.

ITX wants its behavioral health clients nationwide to be able to access Pro-Filer. Outdated infrastructure held ITX back from expanding Pro-Filer across the United States as a hosted service, according to Todd Christensen, IT manager at ITX Enterprises.

Having a single vendor to support the private cloud enables ITX Enterprises to save time on managing IT hardware and to roll out Pro-Filer on a national scale with flexibility and scalability, according to Christensen.

"We've been hosting that consortium of behavioral health for the last 11 years," Christensen told eWEEK. "Now with this HP platform and our scalability, we're able to reach out to some of these clients we support remotely and take their operations in-house here in our data center and provide them with an environment for them to use and record their client information."

With a single vendor managing its infrastructure, ITX was able to reduce administration time by 75 percent. In addition, HP's single management platform enabled ITX to reduce by 85 percent the time to add, remove or change servers.

Relying on a single vendor for its virtual desktop infrastructure simplifies tech support and troubleshooting for storage and server blades, said Christensen.

"The loads and systems requirements from the Pro-Filer system are dynamic and they change quite a bit," he noted. "We're able to smooth those ups and downs out with what's been provided by HP."

In the past, ITX would call Dell, Cisco and Microsoft for various IT needs, Christensen recalled.

ITX reduced the amount of physical servers by 89 percent and lowered its power consumption by $18,000 annually by using the HP BladeSystem, according to ITX.

As part of its infrastructure, ITX uses an HP BladeSystem c7000 Enclosure holding four HP ProLiant BL460c G7 Server Blades and a four-node HP P4800 storage-area network. The BladeSystem enclosure connects to ITX's behavioral health network through an HP Virtual Connect Flex-10 10Gb Ethernet module.

"We replaced 80 odd servers with a [BladeSystem] c7000 enclosure and virtualized everything with VMware," he said.

HP manages ITX's setup consisting of HP and VMware hardware. ITX's computing, network and storage all needed to be on the same management platform, he said.

ITX's networking setup also includes HP A5800 switches. The company prefers a centralized SAN to islands of direct-attached storage, according to Christensen.

In addition, a virtual private network means fewer trips to the company's co-location data center. ITX can manage data center resources remotely, he noted.

"We have many fewer visits to our co-location data center facility, as now I have such a broader picture of the performance of the hardware and can reprovision and more accurately allocate resources much easier through a VPN connection from virtually anywhere," said Christensen.

 
 
 
 
Brian T. Horowitz is a freelance technology and health writer as well as a copy editor. Brian has worked on the tech beat since 1996 and covered health care IT and rugged mobile computing for eWEEK since 2010. He has contributed to more than 20 publications, including Computer Shopper, Fast Company, FOXNews.com, More, NYSE Magazine, Parents, ScientificAmerican.com, USA Weekend and Womansday.com, as well as other consumer and trade publications. Brian holds a B.A. from Hofstra University in New York.

Follow him on Twitter: @bthorowitz

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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