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CASE STUDY: Complete Network Upgrade, Private Rehabilitation Hospital

SUMMARY: Located in Suffolk County New York, a 50-bed rehabilitation hospital was being held together shoe string. Honestly, not far from it. . The infrastructure was a single server, a few consumer-grade products, non-operative Wi-Fi and a wide assortment of various desktops which created more confusions than allowed productivity. The communications sysem was revolutionary for analog-based systems 20 years prior and cost more in monthly service fees in a single year than the system when it was first purchased. There was no existing switching fabric, just an assortment of off-the-shelf, low-capacity "dumb" switches. In addition, there was another building under construction which needed to be interconnected to the main hospital. Luckily, their server was a recent deployment which only required memory and storage upgrades. However in order to accomodate more than 70 staff members, comply with federal HIPAA regulations and come up to date with all of their technology, there needed to be a really strong plan.

CHALLENGE:First we considered that while at that moment there was one building, they had their second building under construction. So interconnecting the buildings was crucial. Trenching was cost prohibitive due to permits costs, not to mention engineering and construction costs. A unified switching fabric was needed to support their current and growing infrastructure. With 2 buildings in mind, their analog phone system would cost more to support, especially considering that access control was required. Their desktop computers were of various makes and models and required more support due to the inconsistencies of technology. Their Wi-Fi was relatively new and has not worked from the day it was installed. This was in part due to the manufacture and in part from its management system, which was controlled by their firewall. Their firewall was nearly 10 years old and barely able to manage their traffic. It offered no scalability and upgrade costs for little return was unrealistic. Document automation was also critical. As a hospital they would need to ensure HIPAA compliancy, as well as network security. Being in a semi-rural area also meant that power outages were common and a strong redundant power solution needed to be implemented.

SOLUTION: Megaphat Networks dove off the deep end in designing multiple strategies to help bring cutting-edge technologies to reality. The firewall was the very first line of attack. While the firewall was being replaced, we also replaced the existing Wi-Fi system with a managed Wi-Fi system that can span beyond the confines of the internal structure. The switching fabric is co-located between the two buildings so that a point to point wireless link ensures consistency between the structures. The analog phone system was replaced with a digital VoIP system along with VoIP-enabled access control systems for both buildings. A deployment plan for streamlining all desktop computers commenced shortly after for ease of support and replacement. HIPAA compliant document management was created usng automated electronic fax and secured email services. Finally a redundant power strategy was deployed along with generator power to ensure consistent run-time of all systems.



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