How to Design a Storage Architecture Built for Healthcare PACS

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Advanced healthcare PACS (picture archiving and communications system) imaging systems, including digital modalities such as MRI, CT, and PET scans, are producing higher-resolution images to enhance the accuracy of clinical decisions. As the number of these systems grows throughout each provider location or hospital system, and the number of images being produced increases, imaging data is growing at an increasingly rapid rate.

Hospitals and clinics are managing many more (and much larger) imaging studies, which need to be highly available across departments and remote facilities. To speed diagnosis, healthcare systems require a modern approach to data storage in a solution that can provide fast reliable access, and that can support new imaging technologies, growing data requirements, and enable a path to cloud environments.

A modern file storage architecture built for high performance and cost-efficiency  

Even hospitals that carefully project their storage needs find that advanced imaging technologies can lead to significant and unexpected increases in storage requirements. A distributed file system–that supports file data workflows both on-premises and in the cloud–will allow you to confidently get the most value from the next generation of healthcare PACS / VNA imaging innovations. 

For those looking to evaluate enterprise data storage solutions for medical imaging in your environment, we’ve created a guide to successful PACS / VNA deployments.

The guide highlights medical imaging use cases, healthcare customer case studies, and includes a priority checklist for a robust and scalable storage architecture to support medical imaging in a modern healthcare enterprise.

Qumulo File Data Platform–an enterprise-proven file storage solution for medical imaging storage 

Qumulo offers a fast, cost-effective, and secure medical imaging storage solution, so you can manage and retain the massive data volumes generated by modern imaging systems. By partnering with the leading healthcare PACS providers, we provide our healthcare customers with a complete and trusted enterprise imaging solution that consolidates storage while providing fast, reliable access. Qumulo Core, the modern storage architecture of our hybrid cloud file system, provides simple scalability and enterprise data management across on-premises data centers, as well as offering the option to leverage multiple cloud environments–as needed. Watch the video below to see how a fast, accessible file storage solution speeds patient services while reducing administrative storage costs.

“Qumulo provides fast image retrieval by physicians, even in the most challenging and urgent hospital environments.”

Mike Brady Infrastructure Network Supervisor, Dayton Children’s Hospital

Addressing the Data Storage Challenges of High-Resolution Medical Imaging

Imaging technology continues to advance with hospitals adopting more modalities with higher resolutions moving from 2D to 3D, and now 4D and 5D scanning, which strains storage infrastructure. For example, a 3D mammography image is about 20 times larger than its 2D predecessor. Consequently, the demand for increased capacity requirements for imaging storage are skyrocketing. Legacy storage systems supporting the management and storage of these images are stretched beyond limits.

The explosion of dense medical imaging increases the need for file data systems that scale to petabyte capacity without speed or performance degradation. Successful healthcare PACS and VNA deployments also increasingly require a file data platform that delivers a simple and seamless path to scalable storage in the cloud in order to support business continuity and disaster recovery requirements or simply to offload infrequently accessed studies. (RELATED: Qumulo Recover Q Wins Best Cloud Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Solution – Cloud Computing Awards)

Healthcare providers need a next-generation file data storage architecture designed to manage the challenges of high-resolution medical imaging workflows, including:

  • Massive storage needs that grow at an exponential rate
  • Latency that prevents physicians from delivering real-time care
  • Vendors moving to single-tier storage architecture
  • Multiple workflows, new modalities, and 3D/4D creating more complexities
  • Lack of institution-wide access with data silos across disparate systems
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