Innovation in Healthcare and Life Sciences

Innovation in Healthcare and Life Sciences

By centralizing its redundant VMware SD-WAN VeloCloud backbone on Platform Equinix, Sentara significantly improved its resiliency with no network outages. Sentara significantly lowered its latency, seeing application response times go from 20 milliseconds (ms) down to four milliseconds, even with a 500 percent increase in greater home interconnectivity over its network to its patient portal.

It is no secret that the era of transformation and exponential growth in healthcare is here. We can see the huge impact this change is creating for health providers with disruptions affecting firms across the industry. A key shift is an increased emphasis on patient-centric care and more intelligent use of data for better patient outcomes. With these demands, organizations are experiencing uncertainty, cost pressures and increasing complexity. 

The life sciences and healthcare industry are facing added pressures to innovate and minimize development cycles. Smaller organizations are finding that small footprints of IT infrastructure are sprawling without oversight, control and operational management. Additionally, large organizations are faced with declining revenue. In light of all of this, healthcare and life sciences organizations remain pressed to modernize information systems, secure their growing number of devices and users accessing their network while providing new digital capability to remote clinicians and patients. They’re also asked to leverage and migrate to the cloud, include AI and ML, and share data securely across health ecosystems.

The digital transformation dilemma 

Adopting a pragmatic approach to modernizing an organization's infrastructure is about placing the appropriate workload in the appropriate location based not just on the proposed effectiveness and efficiency, but on the initial CAPEX and ongoing OPEX costs as well. Life sciences and healthcare organizations have modernized and grown both organically and by acquisition, the network connectivity between applications most likely did not share in these modernization efforts because the infrastructure is “working” and is often overlooked. 

There is a consequential, real and ongoing probability that these organizations are paying for short and long-term performance and requirements that are not being met. But how much money has been spent already? How much should you spend on digital transformation efforts? Which initiatives should garner the most focus?

You can sum all of these questions into one singular interrogative: what should be my digital transformation strategy? This question is the hardest one to address, but the answers will drive the transformation forward and address where you will need to focus.

With Equinix, our customers can take the first step in identifying the cost benefits of network optimization through a current and future state architecture review, including Equinix connectivity options.

Electronic medical/health records (EMR/EHR) and imaging on platform Equinix

In symphony with performing a cost benefit analysis on a strategic transformed target state, the second major hurdle to leap will be the core EHR application — this is literally the life blood of the hospital and must be treated with kid gloves. It is also the single largest consumer of IT budgets in hospital systems and requires the most skills to operate and maintain properly. It’s a massive headache for health delivery organizations, but the headaches don’t stop there as most EHRs are accessed by life sciences and payer organizations as well. 

Hospitals require their EHR to be maximally accessible, always up and never hacked. This is a tall order, but with the right solution and strategy, it can be achieved. To alleviate this headache, many hospitals are turning to hosted solutions for their core EHR application, which alleviates the problem of ongoing systems management, monitoring and a dearth of EHR skills.

Hosting electronic health, medical and/or medical imaging in an Equinix data center helps customers reduce the hardware, software and services cost. Additionally, it can also help reduce the installation and management costs. Increasing speed of access to data and improvement of health care through EHR can decrease the cost of health care.


Equinix (Nasdaq: EQIX) is the world's digital infrastructure company, enabling digital leaders to harness a trusted platform to bring together and interconnect the foundational infrastructure that powers their success. Equinix operates a global interconnection platform of more than 200 International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers in 63 metros across 26 countries.
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