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Singapore turns to private cloud to streamline healthcare services

The healthcare sector has turned to private clouds to improve IT services.

For enterprises looking to fully control data and meet a complex set of compliance and availability obligations, private cloud storage systems are an ideal solution. Innovations in private infrastructure have resulted in a wider range of options than ever before, with many companies able to combine flexible software and hardware to get a solution that fits their objectives.

The private cloud has made inroads in healthcare. Writing for FutureGov, Kelly Ng chronicled the construction of the Consolidated Healthcare Cloud, or H-Cloud, in Singapore. This infrastructure will support more than 30,000 users across the hospitals, clinics and other facilities under the umbrella of the country's Integrated Health Information System.

The project addresses many of the key cost and security issues facing Singapore's healthcare sector. IHiS executive Francis Fan observed that institutions had to deal with rising expenses and complex bureaucracy while still ensuring the confidentiality of patient data. Accordingly, the IHiS looked to cut equipment expenditures and channel investment toward IT services that would streamline cloud storage and improve system performance.

"Previously, every hospital has its own data center, network and infrastructure," stated Fan. "This is highly inefficient and costly. So we want to consolidate, virtualize and migrate all data into H-Cloud, where there is high availability, flexibility to scale, ability to provide service on demand and ease of monitoring, managing and upgrading."

He went to explain that availability would increase from 99.5 percent to 99.9 percent and that provisioning times would be reduced from weeks to days. H-Cloud will feature a pay-as-you-go model for institutions.

Still, organizations without the resources of IHiS may opt to set up less expensive public or hybrid arrangements. Writing for SYS-CON Media, Gilad Parann-Nissany explained that the optimal cloud solution varies depending on the enterprise's size and whether its customers are internal or external. In many cases, companies will need cloud storage solutions that efficiently handle hybrid cloud resources.