Creative Solutions in Healthcare, the largest owner and operator of skilled nursing facilities in the state of Texas, had a problem: IT was driving up costs with little to show for it. The company decided to move their infrastructure to the cloud with VMware vCloud® Air™, and the shift was transformative. Since moving to the cloud with VMware, Creative Solutions in Healthcare went from two dozen servers to a handful of optimized servers, and reduced their IT budget by a third.
Creative Solutions in Healthcare also needed to deliver new forms of compliance as they related to HIPAA, the HITECH Act, as well as the NIST framework, forcing the requirements for their IT efforts to escalate in dramatic fashion. Because of this, Shawn Wiora, Chief Information Officer of Creative Solutions in Healthcare, looked at going from a physical infrastructure to a virtual one.
The company was 100% physical in terms of its server infrastructure. Therefore, they undertook an ambitious initiative – to take the company not only from physical to virtual, but also from on premises to the cloud, all at the same time.
After evaluating several vendors, including AWS and Microsoft Azure, the team initially chose Azure. Their pilot with Azure quickly proved unsuccessful when Microsoft would not indicate that they would support their own software in their cloud. Creative Solutions in Healthcare pulled the plug on the project, and began reevaluating their options. The IT team chose to try again with vCloud Air and ramped up quickly. Wiora considered the project to be a success, mainly because of the quick deployment, common infrastructure and ease of use without training, stating, “VMware’s vCloud Air team had the best on-boarding process for any kind of IT project that I’ve been involved with in the past 20 years.”
Creative Solutions in Healthcare started their pilot project on vCloud Air with a few core applications, and, after getting their feet wet in the cloud, felt comfortable moving other applications and infrastructures. Today, Creative Solutions in Healthcare has their entire back-office infrastructure, accounting, a number of custom applications, provisioning and supply chain in the cloud with vCloud Air.
vCloud Air helped turn the company’s opinion of IT around. Instead of hindering the business, vCloud Air allowed Creative Solution in Healthcare’s IT to achieve the following benefits:
- Provide better uptime, speed and access to patient data
- Increase visibility to better enable healthcare staff to provide consistent quality care
- Improve compliance, while reducing operational costs
- Decrease Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
With vCloud Air, Creative Solutions in Healthcare can provide better uptime, ensure reliable access, and increase agility. Because of this, the company can grow five-fold without having to heavily invest in changes to their IT infrastructure. In fact, with the increased agility and cost savings, they added two additional facilities.
The vCloud Air team also helped optimize the organization’s virtualization strategy, enabling the company’s IT team to focus on new projects and initiatives, like mobility. Wiora explains, “We’re looking at desktop virtualization, our roadmap, disaster recovery, business continuity, and additional levels of compliance. These are all things that we’re focused on now, because we’re able to take advantage of the team at VMware.”
For Creative Solutions in Healthcare, the hybrid cloud has been a game-changer. vCloud Air has enabled the company to take virtual machines to the cloud while keeping them compliant and agile. As Wiora notes, “Instead of being wrapped up with servers, virtualization, and all of the other things that VMware is best at doing, we’re outward focused on the business units and our patients.”
To hear the full interview with Shawn Wiora, listen to our podcast.