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● Data Storage/Data Management

locked in these departmental silos, thus inhibiting the orga- nization from realizing the full value of this data. With a truly healthcare-aware archive in place, the CIO can now collabo- rate with peer department heads to facilitate enhanced data interoperability of systems. To do this eff ectively, the archiving solution must leverage the healthcare standards by which these systems can interact and fully exploit the benefi ts of shared data. T ese standards include: • HL7 (Health Level 7) for the exchange, integration, sharing and retrieval of electronic health information;

• DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine) for the storage and transmission of medical images and medical imaging data; and

• XDS/XDS-I (Cross Enterprise Document Sharing /for Imaging) for the sharing of clinical documents, images, diagnostic reports and related data.

In addition, the archive should have the ability to index both metadata and content to make that data easily searchable by both applications and end-users. Institutions that invest in a progressive deployment of common platforms can easily share data among systems, and rid themselves of the complexities of entrusting their data to multiple vendors and hindering access.

For example, a Massachusetts-based hospital fi rst invested in a vendor platform that ensures image availability at all times. Now, in order to build on that deployment, the institution is currently incorporating operational and disaster-recovery protection to further safeguard those image fi les. T e hospital’s vendor supports the use of XDS-I for access to DICOM im- ages and XDS.b for access to images that are not in DICOM format. T is puts the hospital and personnel, such as its radiol- ogy team, in an excellent position to meet the requirements of MU2 pertaining to image sharing with patients and providers. By eliminating storage silos and consolidating expensive

primary storage, tier-1 storage assets are no longer underuti- lized. T us, healthcare organizations do not pay for expensive storage that sits idle, and they enjoy more fl exibility to employ less-expensive storage where the data access profi le or data value supports that decision. A suffi cient approach to data management must maintain storage-agnostic fl exibility with policy-based archival to ensure cost-eff ective use of tiered storage systems. Only this unique combination will close the divide between what clinicians want and what IT needs in order to provide an intelligent approach to healthcare data management.


14 June 2013


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