While meaningful use stage 2 might be the sexiest headline for the Health Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2012 meeting in 10 days, new or expanding compliance mandates such as disaster recovery (DR) plans that keep patient data backed up, protected and continually accessible are just as significant – albeit not as sexy.
Bridgehead Software, a storage management vendor, completed tallying its 2011 health care data management survey, and plans to reveal detailed results in March. To tease us, the company released a few preview statistics. They indicated that respondents – at least the ones from the United States, which comprised a majority of the 158 who participated – are still tinkering with their HIPAA-mandated data disaster recovery plans as more and more physicians go online with new EHR systems:
- 64% of organizations have a disaster recovery strategy; only 26% would go as far as calling it “robust, tried and tested.”
- 68% of respondents report growing data repositories over the last year versus 2% indicating data decreases.
- 60% of respondents said they manage more than 1TB of data.
- 45% of respondents are planning a major storage upgrade (1TB or more) in the next year.
- 55% of respondents said some applications had archiving abilities, but only 16% said they had a full archiving policy that migrated data to the appropriate storage tiers.
The reason hospitals might have a hard time figuring out their DR plans, said BridgeHead CEO Jim Beagle in a press release, is because of the many different types of data on their network. And they all happen to be expanding. “Amid this technological complexity and unstoppable data growth, the first step towards a robust DR strategy is not an easy one to define.”