Hassle-Free Healthcare IT Expands Patient Care
Great Lakes Bay Health Centers leverages modern IT solutions to reduce barriers to community healthcare
Mobile healthcare to reach more patients
Managing healthcare IT support is a daunting task without the proper systems and technology to keep pace with the demands of healthcare organizations and a changing regulatory landscape. For one Michigan-based health center, SmartDeploy removed complexity in an increasingly complicated IT industry. When administrators, doctors, nurses, and staff benefit from improved IT support, they’re able to improve patient care.
Great Lakes Bay Health Centers (GLBHC) is a community health center made up of more than 500 employees, 30 locations, and 16 counties in Michigan. The organization provides medical care, dental care, and behavioral healthcare to more than 54,000 patients. Locations range from brick and mortar sites of 75 to 100 users to smaller remote locations inside schools and other medical organizations.
Josh Fabera is part of the IT technical support team for GLBHC. “SmartDeploy’s flexibility is great because each of our locations has its own needs. We have a wide variety of users, technology, and hardware, so it’s not one situation fits all,” said Fabera.
Fabera’s team of 10 supports both traditional medical offices and a mobile medical and dental bus program that provides remote, state-of-the-art technology and services, including health screenings, dental exams, fluoride treatments, and sealants. “We have our buses set up with routers that let them function as mobile offices. If they have a good connection, we can update drivers and applications, and even reimage a machine over the cloud,” said Fabera. He is impressed by SmartDeploy Cloud Services and the ability to use cloud deployment to manage the remote GLBHC sites.
Faster IT, fewer barriers
Fabera estimates that 75 percent of GLBHC uses laptops, the majority of which are HP® EliteBooks of more than 15 different models. A single change to BIOS or firmware that compromises endpoint security creates an unnecessary strain on time and resources. With SmartDeploy, the team can push updates remotely to keep endpoints up to date.
“Platform Packs are awesome. Drivers are always up to date, and I like having BIOS updates now. We try to keep a laptop for three years and a desktop for five years. Being able to see that we have the freshest drivers and BIOS updates on those computers is crucial.”
When Fabera’s team experiences a hardware issue and reaches out to HP support, the first thing they ask is, “Is the BIOS updated?” Fabera can confidently say “yes” because pushing BIOS updates is simple with SmartDeploy. These ongoing updates are part of the endpoint maintenance process.
SmartDeploy Platform Packs enable reliable and efficient management of a variety of computers. A Platform Pack is a compressed, single-instance stored file that contains device drivers and other platform-specific software for a specific make, model, and operating system of a target device. SmartDeploy has more than 1,500 Platform Packs that support all major OEM, business-class models.
“SmartDeploy won out by a long shot. And now, two years in, I have no reason to consider other options. We pushed for SmartDeploy. It works. It’s simple, and I’m a fan of simple.”
— Josh Fabera, Technical Support Specialist, Great Lakes Bay Health Centers
Reliable data migration
Within the healthcare industry, the US federal government requires IT systems and technology to meet specific security standards, and state laws require additional protections. Managing the exponential growth of patient data is an added hurdle for the healthcare IT industry. In the cloud or on-premise, wired or wireless, SmartDeploy has the out-of-box capability to migrate user data to a new operating system securely.
“I’ve worked the majority of my career in healthcare, and the issue that sets us apart from other organizations and other sectors is we have to be very concerned about HIPAA, protecting user data, and securing it,” said Fabera.
When he was preparing for a Windows® 10 migration project, he knew the team needed to find something that worked. “User migrations are major for us. We have to retain all the user files for a long time. So, we have to have a system in place to do that,” he said. “It’s a multistep process, and SmartDeploy works well. With our Windows 7 to Windows 10 migration, we’ve had 100 percent success.”
Less complexity, better patient care
SmartDeploy’s approach to disk imaging is 47 percent faster than Symantec™ Ghost and 67 percent faster than Acronis® Snap Deploy. Before Fabera joined GLBHC, the IT team used Ghost. Febera recalled, “With our old solution, whenever we would order a new PC model, we would have to redo the whole image and do everything from scratch. We had 10 to 15 different images going out at one time for different makes and models. It was inefficient and wasteful so I made it a priority to find a better solution.” The team started a search for a new solution that could properly support Windows 10, diverse hardware, and varying site requirements.
One tool the team considered was Microsoft® System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM). However, in his previous role at a large healthcare organization with a support team of almost 100 people, Fabera had frustration around maintaining SCCM. “Our network team considered going with SCCM, but the problem is that it is very in-depth and intensive to set up, configure, and maintain.” Fabera’s goal was to increase simplicity with setup and maintenance.
“SmartDeploy won out by a long shot. And now, two years in, I have no reason to consider other options,” he said. “We pushed for SmartDeploy. It works. It’s simple, and I’m a fan of simple.” Healthcare IT depends on secure, reliable technology. SmartDeploy’s ease of use saves resources and frees up IT to focus on GLBHC practitioners so they can focus on the more critical responsibility of patient care.
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