Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Zakia Bouachraoui, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: @DXWorldExpo, Java IoT, Industrial IoT, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, Cloud Security

@DXWorldExpo: Article

Disaster Recovery in the Electronic Era

Aligning the disaster recovery plan with the needs of the institution

A hurricane strikes and your healthcare facility must care for an influx of injured patients. How quickly will you able to access your computer systems and electronic data?

While most healthcare facilities have disaster recovery plans in place, many are based on an outdated paradigm in which information technology was much less critical than it is today. Today, many healthcare providers lack adequate capabilities to restore critical information and services in an adequate amount of time in the event of a disaster.

With the rapid migration of healthcare systems from manual, paper-based processes to centralized computer systems, data backup and disaster recovery has become more critical than ever, but also more complex. This increasing reliance on computer systems has led to an explosive growth of data - and a growing challenge when disaster strikes.

Whether a disaster results from a hurricane or a computer hacker, damage to centralized technology systems will affect multiple processes and data. The longer it takes to reinstate systems and restore data, the more difficult it will be for the healthcare provider to continue operations.

We often work with healthcare systems looking to improve their disaster recovery strategies. Aligning the disaster recovery plan with the needs of the institution is a four-step process.

1. Determine business needs. First, interview end users, application owners and other stakeholders to uncover business processes and applications used. An important goal in this step is to establish the "recovery point objective" (RPO): How much data can the organization afford to lose? You also need to establish the recovery time objective (RTO): How long can the service be unavailable before the organization can no longer operate?

2. Gap analysis. What capabilities do the IT systems currently provide? How do these capabilities differ from the business requirements? With gap analysis, you can document key gaps and identify the impact of outages on the organization.

3. Design a plan to close the gaps. Create a technical and procedural plan to close the gaps. Where IT cannot currently provide the required RPO and RTO to the business, define a plan to ensure these objectives can be delivered.

4. Execute the plan: Closing the gaps between business needs and capabilities may be a multi-year process, depending on the time and resources available. In general, we recommend that an organization prioritize the most critical applications. If budget is unavailable to update systems and processes to provide the desired RPO and RTO for all systems, choose those with the greatest return on investment - the ones which are most important to the success of the organization. Plan to budget capital and/or operational funds in subsequent years to provide adequate recoverability for additional services.

Disaster recovery planning can be a valuable education process. Most importantly, it compels the organization to anticipate the worst - and to feel more confident about tackling the aftermath.

More Stories By Nick Chandler

Nick Chandler is a Senior Consultant for Data Center & Application Delivery at Burwood Group, a consulting firm specializing in IT management and infrastructure solutions. Nick specializes in the design and deployment of Data Center infrastructure technologies, including core networking, server virtualization, and unified storage. Founded in 1997 and headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Burwood Group serves local, national, and international clients, helping them bridge the gap between business strategy and technology solutions.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


CloudEXPO Stories
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Scott Davis, CTO of Embotics, discussed how automation can provide the dynamic management required to cost-effectively deliver microservices and container solutions at scale. He also discussed how flexible automation is the key to effectively bridging and seamlessly coordinating both IT and developer needs for component orchestration across disparate clouds – an increasingly important requirement at today’s multi-cloud enterprise.
Security, data privacy, reliability and regulatory compliance are critical factors when evaluating whether to move business applications from in-house client hosted environments to a cloud platform. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Vandana Viswanathan, Associate Director at Cognizant, In this session, will provide an orientation to the five stages required to implement a cloud hosted solution validation strategy.
"Calligo is a cloud service provider with data privacy at the heart of what we do. We are a typical Infrastructure as a Service cloud provider but it's been designed around data privacy," explained Julian Box, CEO and co-founder of Calligo, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Jo Peterson is VP of Cloud Services for Clarify360, a boutique sourcing and benchmarking consultancy focused on transforming technology into business advantage. Clarify360 provides custom, end-to-end solutions from a portfolio of more than 170 suppliers globally. As an engineer, Jo sources net new technology footprints, and is an expert at optimizing and benchmarking existing environments focusing on Cloud Enablement and Optimization. She and her team work with clients on Cloud Discovery, Cloud Planning, Cloud Migration, Hybrid IT Architectures ,Cloud Optimization and Cloud Security. Jo is a 25-year veteran in the technology field with tenure at MCI, Intermedia/Digex, Qwest/CenturyLink in pre-sales technical, selling and management roles.
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.