Wounds Healed in the Cloud

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Bridging the Gap

WoundVision is a wound care industry pioneer in advanced wound detection technology. WoundVision solutions allow healthcare providers to predict and track deep tissue injury, pressure ulcers and other wounds by utilizing personalized patient health data and infrared thermal imaging. With more than 60 years of combined experience in building successful healthcare technology businesses, the WoundVision team has quickly assembled an advanced wound care technology solution, proven its effectiveness at St. Luke Hospital in Toledo, Ohio and is now executing its go-to-market strategy.

As a start-up with limited resources and software that relies on a database that is constantly updating and growing, it was not in WoundVision’s best interest to host its own servers or take on the day-to-day headaches of managing and maintaining its own servers. Because its hosted application and database are accessed on hospital computers via standard internet connectivity, providing a traditional on-premise solution would require each hospital to deploy or assign hardware plus constant updates to the database and application. As a result, it was determined that a cloud hosting provider with pay-as-you-grow pricing and scalability was necessary to host the company’s technology platform.

A bigger concern for WoundVision was security. Providing a solution to the healthcare industry requires comprehensive security, strict records and data controls, forcing WoundVision to need to know exactly what is happening to the infrastructure and where the data is at all times. WoundVision needed potential cloud providers to demonstrate that they were in compliance with applicable regulations and could provide high levels of security before they would entrust their critical systems to the cloud.

WoundVision initially deployed its software solution on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), quickly realizing the power of public cloud computing and lower costs, but began to experience issues with limited support options. This led the company to evaluate several other cloud providers, ultimately choosing Bluelock, a certified VMware vCloud Datacenter provider of Virtual Datacenters, due to the organization’s market performance and experience, scalability and client support.

“After extensive research on the best solution to deploy our software we understood the benefits of public cloud computing, but we quickly realized there are important differences between commodity clouds and enterprise clouds,” said Andrew Hoover, IT director, WoundVision. “Amazon enabled us to cheaply host our software, but offered no support besides a forum or a for-fee service which often stated that the problems are with the customer’s software, but offered no real guidance on how to find or resolve problems. Bluelock provided the level of scalability, security and value we require, while having the experienced personnel to help us do all of it.”

Although pricing wasn’t the only factor in WoundVision’s decision, the cost savings and quality of service that Bluelock offered were substantial. “Had we built our own infrastructure, we not only would have been unable to afford the type of equipment or meet the stringent security requirements, but it would have cost $500,000 to build the initial datacenter alone,” said Hoover. “With Bluelock, we have a large datacenter feel and security without large datacenter costs.”

Bluelock Virtual Datacenters (VDC) take minutes to set up, either through the vCloud Director-based self-service interface or with Bluelock’s managed services team. Users can build new virtual machines (VMs) quickly from public and private catalogs of VM templates, or simply upload VMs they already have running in an environment. With Bluelock VDCs, users can easily subtract and add capacity as they go, paying for only what is used. With the ability to upload and download any VMware-compatible workloads, users can easily migrate to and from the Bluelock VDC. The solution is built on open standards with OVF packaging for the transport of workloads and interoperability, with additional support for the VMware vCloud API.

Business Value

WoundVision moved its beta healthcare software into a Bluelock Virtual Datacenter, running on two virtual machines behind the security infrastructure. One virtual machine runs the application and the web server and the second is a SQL server and file server. The company not only experienced the savings and scalability they sought, but also experienced additional benefits. “Going with the cloud and with Bluelock has removed a lot of risk for us. We just focus on our application and growing the business,” said Hoover.

WoundVision has also benefited from Bluelock’s innovative architecture and heightened emphasis on security. vCloud Datacenter delivers consistent and auditable security and performance through SSAE 16 certifications as well as technical capabilities such as network isolation, role-based access control and directory services integration.

“With Amazon, its system could be under a denial-of-service (DOS) attack and you would never know or be told. When I asked where records were stored, they said on the East coast. That is not good enough,”stated Hoover. “With Bluelock, I know exactly where the data is and I can get direct access to all the firewall and security logs and reports. I always know what is going on and can report on that to be in compliance. That is extremely comforting, especially when it comes to our industry.”

Future Plans

As its hosted healthcare software gets close to market, WoundVision expects it will need to split the file server and SQL database into separate virtual machines and provision multiple web servers in a load balancing schema. WoundVision plans to continue to utilize Bluelock’s expertise and support as they move forward.

“Today the system is small but when we go live in a couple months, we will need several VMs, including load balancing and redundant backup,” said Hoover. “We are absolutely confident scaling this system with Bluelock will be easy.”

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