Improved application response time and stability and increased troubleshooting efficiency
Tracking performance baselines and developing trends helps teams respond to changes
More time for doctor-patient interaction and higher satisfaction among medical staff
Steward Health Care System has grown rapidly—more than doubling the number of hospitals in its network over the last four years. In addition to this rapid growth, Steward Health Care has had to manage a wide proliferation of mobile devices—from more than 900 workstations on wheels (WOWs) used by front-line hospital staff to tablets and laptops used by doctors and nurses in ambulatory care clinics.
"Originally, we had six semi-connected hospitals, and adding five more exponentially increased IT complexity," says Mat Demers, Director of Systems Engineering for Steward Health Care.
In total, Steward Health Care delivers over 200 different applications, including MEDITECH, athenahealth, and eClinicalWorks for electronic health records (EHR), and their performance is critical for both employee productivity and the quality of patient care. "When a task that should take seconds takes minutes, the department workflow gets disrupted—and many tasks on the nursing floor are repeated, so those delays can literally add up to hours over a long shift," says Adam Hanson, Senior Director of Enterprise Infrastructure and Solutions Engineering for Steward Health Care.
With ExtraHop, we're freeing doctors and nurses to spend more time with patients instead of waiting for the application.
Adam Hanson Senior Director of Enterprise Infrastructure and Solutions Engineering, Steward Health Care
Steward Health Care deployed ExtraHop to gain critical insight into its wire data—all L2–L7 communications between systems—and see performance issues in context, so they can be quickly understood and resolved.
Quick Standup and Easy Maintenance
Within an hour of installation, the ExtraHop appliance was providing useful, actionable information. "Often, you buy something and it's so complicated that it takes weeks of staff time to get value out of it," says Hanson. "But ExtraHop is almost plug-and-play in terms of the standup process, which is a huge departure from traditional monitoring tools. Even better, it requires nearly zero maintenance. The simplicity of ExtraHop was as advertised."
From Context and Correlation to IT Insights
With ExtraHop, Steward's IT teams are able to correlate reported incidents with activity across the application delivery chain—right down to the precise workstation, user session, application, and servers involved—and gain complete visibility across all layers.
"If a nurse pulls a patient's medical records, it's typically not a very linear communication path," says Hanson. "That single mouse-click involves calls to multiple data sources, across the 30-or-so fileservers that hold code for the application, and then reassembling and presenting it through Citrix XenApp. None of our other monitoring tools enabled us to correlate those inter-server communications and especially Citrix delivery—and that's the type of stuff we're using ExtraHop to really understand."