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Publikováno: 7/22/2013
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Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan City Hospitals Protect Data from the Tohoku Earthquake, Expedite Medical Response

Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan and Ishinomaki City Hospital collaborated to back up and protect their electronic medical data by extending their respective networks to the other hospital 100 kilometers away. When the Tohoku Earthquake struck in March 2011, Ishinomaki was devastated by the resulting tsunami. But thanks to its backup server at Saiseikan running Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager, the data was recovered, and it expedited the hospital’s medical response to the disaster.

Summary
As a public hospital, the Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan (Saiseikan) has been providing medical care to the citizens of its region for 140 years. The hospital had moved to electronic medical records in early 2006 but was backing up its data on tapes stored onsite—which could easily be destroyed in the event of a major disaster. Saiseikan wanted a data protection solution that would be safer, more cost-effective, and easier to manage, and that would also meet regulations and protect patients’ privacy.

With the help of Microsoft partners Software Service and Alphatec Solutions, it devised a plan to enter into a data backup arrangement with another public hospital that operates under similar governance rules, Ishinomaki City Hospital. Saiseikan and Ishinomaki’s databases are both built on Microsoft SQL Server 2008, and Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager was added to facilitate the data backup. The project was completed just in time; the Tohoku Earthquake struck Japan and the resulting tsunami hit Ishinomaki directly, destroying all servers and medical devices on the ground floor. Thanks to the data protection and restoration efforts of Ishinomaki and Saiseikan Hospitals, the city’s healthcare system is recovering and has plans to make its data infrastructure stronger than ever: Ishinomaki City Hospital Director Hideo Ise says, “We now have a new mission as a public hospital: to reconstruct our medical service system seamlessly for our entire service area.”

The Full Story
Protecting Vital Medical Data from Disaster
As a public hospital, the Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan (Saiseikan) has been providing medical care to the citizens of its region for 140 years. The hospital had moved to electronic medical records in early 2006 but was backing up its data on tapes stored onsite, which could easily be destroyed in the event of a major disaster. Saiseikan wanted a data protection solution that would be safer, more cost-effective, and easier to manage, and would also meet regulations and protect patient’s privacy. With the help of Microsoft partners Software Service and Alphatec Solutions, it devised a plan to enter into a data backup arrangement with another public hospital that operates under similar governance rules.

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* [After the earthquake,] we executed the disk-to-disk data restoration, and it was a surprise to see how smoothly it went. All of the data was restored. *

Akio Horimoto
Server Group Manager, Technology Development Department, Software Service, Inc.

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Saiseikan’s Director, Hidetoshi Hirakawa, was former schoolmates with Hideo Ise, Director at Ishinomaki City Hospital (Ishinomaki) and Head of the Hospital Bureau for the City of Ishinomaki. Although 100 kilometers apart, the hospitals had similar electronic medical record systems and security requirements, and they both worked with the same partner, so the two hospitals decided to collaborate.

Independent Networks, Secure Remote Backup
The plan was for Saiseikan to back up Ishinomaki’s data on its servers, and vice versa. This would ensure data protection for both hospitals, and neither would have to pay for data storage at an outside location where governance for privacy protection would also be an issue. This disaster preparedness arrangement between Saiseikan and Ishinomaki was based on a simple idea, yet it was unprecedented in Japan. In August 2010, the hospitals began work with Software Service to prepare their respective environments for backing up the other’s data.

Akio Horimoto, Server Group Manager for the Technology Development Department at Software Service, says, “We use Microsoft SQL Server 2008 for the database to handle electronic medical records, and the excellent compatibility with SQL Server was one of the reasons we went with Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager.”

Software Solutions worked with the hospitals to extend each network to the other hospital location and place a backup server, installed with System Center Data Protection Manager, onsite (Figure 1). For this reason, the Ishinomaki server could not be accessed from the Saiseikan network, and vice versa.

With System Center Data Protection Manager, the hospitals can now save their data locally disk-to-disk and users no longer have to shut down their systems to perform a backup. It’s exactly the kind of system that Hirakawa had first envisioned for Saiseikan; little did he know that it would be Ishinomaki City Hospital that would need help with disaster recovery first.

Disaster Strikes, Recovered Data Aids Response
On March 11, 2011—just a couple of weeks after the data protection system was fully operational—the Tohoku Earthquake struck Japan and the resulting tsunami hit Ishinomaki directly, destroying all servers and medical devices on the ground floor. Everyone at the hospital made it safely through the event, but the week that followed required painstaking work to fully evacuate and regain communications. To make sure they provided the right treatment to patients in earthquake shelters, hospital staff needed their patient ID numbers, prescriptions, and injection instructions. However, the paper medical records at the hospital had been washed away, the medical equipment had been damaged, and the servers storing the electronic medical data had been flooded.

Figure 1.
Figure 1. Diagram of the data protection system devised by
Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan and Ishinomaki City Hospital.













One week after the earthquake, Ishinomaki was finally able to reach Saiseikan, which contacted Software Service to devise a plan for recovering the data. Saiseikan delivered Ishinomaki’s data to Software Service via a laptop transported by ambulance. “We executed the disk-to-disk data restoration, and it was a surprise to see how smoothly it went. All of the data was restored,” said Horimoto.

With Recovery, a New Mission
The City of Ishinomaki is recovering from the disaster and, thanks to the data protection and restoration efforts of Ishinomaki and Yamagata Saiseikan Hospitals, the city’s healthcare system has a strong foundation of recovered information to build on. “We now have a new mission as a public hospital: to reconstruct our medical service system seamlessly for our entire service area,” says Ise.

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Profil organizace
Yamagata City Hospital Saiseikan is a public hospital that has served the region since 1873; it handles 40 percent of the city of Yamagata’s emergency medical cases, and also specializes in neurosurgery.

Software a služby
  • Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager 2007
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008

Stát/Region
Japan

Jazyk
English

Partneři
Alphatec Solutions Software Service, Inc.

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