Case Study

Hospital Assures Performance and Availability Across ISP Circuits

Hospital Assures Performance and Availability Across ISP Circuits


The Challenge
  • Previous performance management tool end-of-life and needed replacing 
  • Several digital transformations in data center and IoT devices also required visibility 
The Solution
  • nGeniusONE® Service Assurance platform 
  • NETSCOUT® Certified InfiniStreamNG® software appliances 
  • Certified nGenius® 5010 nGenius Packet Flow Switches 
The Results
  • Protecting the security of IoT devices with access to packet data for analysis 
  • Ensuring performance & availability of services in the core and ISP access 

Customer Profile

For more than 75 years, this US healthcare provider has been dedicated to treating the youngest, most seriously ill and injured children in their geographic area, from its neonatal intensive care unit to its pediatric organ transplant center. Renowned for pediatric specialties in cardiology, cancer, and orthopedics, among others, the 6,000 employees and 850 medical professionals of this teaching hospital treat nearly 100,000 patients a year. Their scope of operations is substantial, with a 600-bed hospital facility and an ambulatory care center, along with 40 off-site clinics in their service area. There is no doubt that this staff depends on the digital services supporting campus-wide connectivity to ensure treatment, diagnostic tests, scheduling, and prescription services all operate as efficiently as possible to optimize the patient-care experience. 

The Challenge

This healthcare provider was facing several challenges. 

  • Their performance management tool had been end-of-lifed by the vendor, and the IT staff needed a new solution that would meet their current and future requirements. 
  • Recent and ongoing data center transformations, including a new data center – Cisco® Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) software-defined networking (SDN), several new Internet of Things (IoT) projects, and ongoing security initiatives all required sophisticated visibility. 
  • The on-campus and remote performance of their Internet Service Provider (ISP) circuits, all of their healthcare and patient-focused applications, including their Cerner Electronic Medical Records (EMR) application and voice over IP (VoIP) services, and their technology initiatives were of the utmost importance when considering their next-generation services assurance solution. 

Solution in Action

Following a rigorous evaluation, the healthcare’s IT staff selected the nGeniusONE Service Assurance solution for visibility of their critical medical application services throughout their Cisco ACI data center, campus-wide, and out to the individual devices used by doctors, nurses, and staff. The healthcare’s IT staff have put nGeniusONE solutions to work in the following areas: 

  • Deployed certified nGenius 5010 Packet Flow Switches in their primary and backup data centers to provide access to the network packets to feed InfiniStreamNG appliances for service assurance as well as security tools for vulnerability analysis, in particular to ensure security of their IoT devices. 
  • Implemented certified InfiniStreamNG software appliances for visibility into EMR, other healthcare applications, as well as VoIP services in their primary data center and a co-lo data center. 
  • Installed certified ISNG software appliances to monitor their ISP connections to the internet to ensure availability and performance for medical staff checking on patient records remotely.

With the added visibility, the IT staff is monitoring activity for their key healthcare services in the core, along with communications performance across their ISP circuits to assure quality delivery of services. 

The Results

The safe, secure use of their IoT devices for patient diagnostics, care, and treatment is a major benefit for the initial implementation of the nGenius Packet Flow Switches that are passing the network traffic to existing security tools. This level of security is essential to meet Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) security regulations, but also to maintain availability of smartphones, tablets, carts on wheels, and other IoT devices. This also has the advantage of avoiding damage to their reputation and the potential for expensive fines. 

With healthcare professionals following patient recovery from illnesses and surgery from anywhere, anytime, and even when off-duty, visibility to protect the performance and availability of services through their ISP and in the core of their data centers and co-lo’s is also beneficial. It is providing the necessary real-time metrics to quickly identify congestion and degradations as they emerge, so the IT staff can troubleshoot the cause and restore service to normal, hopefully before the issues broadly impact hospital staff. When children are the patients, speed of treatment is everything!