Content Migration In Practice: The 30 TB Example

In our previous blogs (‘ECM Data Migration’ (I) And ‘ECM Data Migration’ (II): How Could We Help Here?’), we explored some of the benefits that customers can get via smart use of content migration services. But it’s one thing to talk about benefits in the abstract, the real proof of the data migration ‘pudding’ is in real-world customer success. So, today, let’s look at just such a case study – as I am sure you will find it insightful, even if you are in a different sector.

We are delighted to be able to report the successful completion of a big data migration project earlier this year for Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust. It was a large move! It involved the transfer of over 30 Terabytes – encompassing some 95 million individual medical images – to a new open standard, vendor-neutral archive (VNA), which is going to be the main foundation for the Trust’s EPR (electronic patient record) strategy going forward. Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust is one of the largest and busiest in the North of England. It will move into new state-of-the-art premises in 2017, but wants to be paper-light in the way it manages patient records first.

To put the move another way, it’s the medical image content needed to look after over 560,000 patients as held in 96 million study files. We took seven years worth of DICOM image data from the Trust’s older PACS to its new home (Carestream). We also managed the migration of the most recent two years’ data to the new Carestream PACS. SynApps worked in a successful partnership here with Pukka-J, a specialist in medical imaging and software development.

The new platform, based on our partner EMC’s Collaborative Healthcare Solution, has already started the easy archiving/retrieval of medical images from the Trust’s Radiology PACS systems in and out of the VNA.

What’s great about this system is that it’s a real example of what I talked about before – keeping what’s important and relevant even as you move to a new paradigm. In this case, we’re supporting all Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen’s historical Radiology data from 2007 onwards but also providing a home for other types of medical image content in both DICOM and non-DICOM format, all of which is currently residing in other departmental systems  – therefore maximising its future use, potential and value.

The customer has gone on record about the value content migration has given back. James Norman, CIO at the Trust, comments: “This entire project is pivotal to our strategy of advancing patient care and creating easy access to complete, unified electronic medical records. SynApps has been meticulous in its work, and has delivered against every target, which is no mean feat given the extremely high volumes of content.”

As with any data migration of this size, there was a considerable need for continuous planning, testing and monitoring to ensure the successful completion of this exercise within the required timeline. Close involvement with the Royal Liverpool Radiology PACS administrators was also critical to our success.

 This was a great project and I think it says a lot about content migration’s possibilities.