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St. Anthony's Selects IBM Technology to Deliver Real-Time Access to Patient Medical Images

With Latest Technology From IBM Doctors Can Access Medical Images Within Seconds

ST. LOUIS, MO - 23 May 2003: IBM today announced that St. Anthony's Medical Center is installing a new data center using IBM storage, server and software, allowing physicians to access patient information, including large diagnostic image files, such as X-rays, mammographys and CAT scans, typically in 30 seconds or less.

The new system will allow doctors to access high-resolution images quickly from a computer. Previously, medical images from radiology would have to be stored on film, retrieved and hand delivered to doctors.

St. Anthony's, a private hospital with 794 beds, is the third-largest hospital in St. Louis and is growing rapidly. In an effort to keep up with their growth, improve the speed of patient diagnosis, and comply with new regulations such as HIPAA, the medical center selected IBM technology to run a Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS), a library of high-quality radiology and ultrasound diagnostic images.

"The ability of physicians to immediately access medical images and x-rays will result in faster diagnosis, and the potentially life-saving benefits this provides will have a major impact on the health of our patients," said Greg Pinz, Director of Information Systems at St Anthony's. "The IBM technology gives us the capacity to hold and quickly access the data-intense images in our PACS library, currently 250,000 images and growing."

St. Anthony's will deploy a massive 20-terabyte storage area network (SAN) with IBM's newest TotalStorage Enterprise Storage Server (codename 'Shark'), IBM Enterprise Tape Library 3494 for backup and recovery and IBM Tivoli Storage Manager for storage management. In addition, the data center includes IBM eServer pSeries to help deliver the images over the network. The IBM SAN stores information created through a PACS.

Implementing this kind of advanced digitized radiology solution places St. Anthony's at the forefront of high tech medical treatment facilities. Additionally, the new technology infrastructure will allow St. Anthony's to stay ahead of the technology demands of the latest digital modalities for cardiac and radiology patients.

St. Anthony's chose IBM over competing vendors because of the reliability of their storage systems and their superior disaster recovery technology. Protecting patient data in the result of a disaster and complying with HIPAA was St. Anthony's highest priority, the IBM storage solution will help the hospital by providing a secondary data center that will "mirror" all the data, so the hospital can be up-and-running quickly should anything disrupt the primary data center.

The new HIPAA requirement is creating more demands on hospital's digital storage infrastructure due to the need to implement a highly reliable disaster recovery solution, an audit trail for viewing patient data and the need to store patient information for longer periods.

"Leading-edge hospitals like St. Anthony's want to deliver images to doctors and radiologists within seconds and with more reliability to improve patient care," said Kathy Smith, vice president of Emerging Business Markets, IBM Systems Group. "The IBM infrastructure will provide a solution that will help allow doctors to have on-demand access to patient files."

In addition to mission critical PACS data, the IBM SAN will support many of the hospitals' systems, including pharmacy and transcription data, as well as office automation applications such as email, document management, financials and payroll, and other back office applications.

Lowery Systems Inc., an IBM Business Partner, also helped with the planning and installation of the SAN.

IBM draws on its diverse product portfolio to develop integrated solutions that leverage the strength of its storage division together with its breadth of IT products and cutting-edge work in healthcare, life sciences and other industries. Having invested $200 million over the last two years alone to life sciences development, IBM is the largest player in the field outside of the major pharmaceutical companies.

Contact(s) information

Clint Roswell
IBM Media Relations
(914) 766-4888
roswellc@us.ibm.com

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System i, System p, System x, System z, BladeCenter, and Supercomputers
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Information Management, Lotus, Tivoli, Rational, WebSphere, Open standards, open source
Storage
Storage software, tape and disk innovations

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