A life-critical network connecting hospitals, community health centres and ambulance stations in regional and remote Australia

State's Health Department
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A
Sydney (Head Office)
15-17 William Street, Alexandria NSW 2015
P
1300 837 835 (1300 VERTEL)

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Modern medicine depends upon reliable communications, which are essential to the delivery of health services to the community, especially when natural disasters hit. We delivered mission-critical and life-critical networks connecting over 100 sites across the state including Hospitals, Community Health Centres (CHCs), Ambulance Stations and Health Offices with the prospect of connecting more sites in future.

The Challenge

In 2013, the state’s Health department needed to upgrade its existing network to enable improved services to a growing population and to cater for evolving medical health technology such as Electronic Medication Management (eMM), Electronic Medical Records (eMR) and medical imaging applications. “Technology is transforming how we live and work through improved connectivity, intelligent software, and smart, mobile devices. Health is no exception,” say the personnel at the Infrastructure Office of the Health department.

The Health department required a Wide Area Network (HWAN) which would provide:

  • Low-latency real-time, multimedia-based applications and services across a converged and virtualised network covering the state.
  • Reliable high bandwidth networking.
  • Network redundancy through path, media and more importantly carrier diversity.
  • Strong network security.

Our Approach

Vertel was selected because of our ability to deliver carrier-grade MEF-certified services across the state, especially in regional and remote areas in a timely and cost-effective manner, and to deliver both access and carrier diverse links for true redundancy in the network. We were also chosen because of our capacity to create a network which other state government departments could leverage off, creating additional value-add for the project. Our agility would enable us to rapidly deploy services that exceed Health department’s performance requirements.

The Solution

Vertel delivered Carrier Ethernet 2.0 microwave-based redundant access links across the state. Microwave was also used for some primary connections, where fibre would have been too difficult or too expensive. The services provided by Vertel are VLAN-based end-to-end, and aggregated to a centralised Network-to-Network Interface (NNI) interconnect pointwith Health department’s network in the state’s Government’s data centres in the City.

The first phase of the project was completed in July 2016, connecting multiple sites including Hospitals, Community Health Centres (CHCs), and Ambulance Stations and Health offices across eight regional areas.

The second phase of the project is currently being implemented, connecting more sites across two outer metro health districts with the prospect of providing further services to sites in six more regions.

The Results

The department’s staff now has access to a high-capacity network that enables them to better support their clinical initiatives and collaboration and utilise the range of eHealth tools that are increasingly benefiting healthcare professional around the world.

The Health network is more than mission-critical, it is life-critical. Modern medicine depends upon reliable communications, which are essential to the delivery of health services to the community, especially when natural disasters hit.

The carrier-grade network that enabled the Health department to increase the reliability of frontline clinical and real time applications and increase network resilience. The network was able to provide seamless integration with existing government data centres and significantly reduce costs through consolidation.

Vertel’s intervention has helped to enable smarter, healthier and safer Australian communities, providing significant economic benefit to the state.

We were impressed with Vertel’s vision, capability and experience in the healthcare space. Its ability to roll-out the network quickly was a key requirement of this project. Our staff now have access to a high-capacity network that enables them to better support their clinical initiatives and collaboration and utilise the range of eHealth tools that are increasingly benefitting healthcare professional around the world.

Infrastructure Office
State Health Department

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