Fraser Health Authority rolls out new change automation management solution

British Columbia’s (B.C.) Fraser Health Authority (FHA) will rollout a new application to automate change management and enhance network service availability across the organization.

Created in 2001 through the merger of three B.C. healthcare organizations FHA delivers health care and preventive services to 1.3 million people – 33 per cent of the B.C. population.

With the rapid growth and complexity of its production network, FHA recognized the need to automate its change management processes, according to Neil Stainton, information technology architect, technical architecture, FHA. He said to accomplish this, FHA will implement DeviceAuthority Suite, a multi-vendor network change and configuration management (NCCM) solution. The new technology is expected to reduce network downtime, improve staff efficiency and lower network device administration costs.

FHA production networks – currently hosted at two centralized locations – provide 2,000 doctors and 20,000 employees with continuous access to vital applications.

Stainton said DeviceAuthority Suite would be harnessed to create rules, policies and implement processes. “Most importantly, we will have answers on why a device changed, or is out of ITIL (information technology infrastructure library) compliance, and be given direction to fix it.”

FHA will take advantage of DeviceAuthority Suite’s automation and intelligence to enhance the overall performance and reliability of its network. As FHA will be constantly aware of the state of the network, it will be able to proactively administer device configurations to prevent outages. IT staff will have the ability to automate device configuration backups, generate inventory reports, and simplify troubleshooting.

FHA currently uses HP OpenView Network Node Manager (NNM) to monitor errors, performance and capacity on their WAN and LAN devices and SNMP-enabled servers. It plans to rely on DeviceAuthority Suite’s integration with HP OpenView NNM to quickly implement changes and updates with built in workflow and validation. Recently, FHA implemented other technology tools to integrate infrastructures and facilitate communication between its disparate systems.

For instance, one major challenge it faced, until recently, was getting the small, disparate organizations and IT systems that now comprise the FHA to work together as a cohesive whole.

So working together with Habanero Consulting Group, FHA developed an information management project proposal solution using Microsoft Office InfoPath 2003 electronic forms and a Windows SharePoint Services site to administer each new proposal. The solution reduced the work required to initiate, approve and implement new projects – by nearly 15 hours per project.

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