In this case study:
- Disaster Recovery
- Regulatory Compliance
- Knowledge Transfer
COVID-19 Increases Urgency for Disaster Recovery for Non-Profit
Quisitive was engaged by a non-profit hospital with over 5,000 employees to help the organization understand rational and business opportunities for establishing disaster recovery within the Azure cloud.
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the hospital, like many, experienced a nearly overwhelming influx of patients. They had experienced some systems and applications going down for periods of time in the past, but, in the current climate, an outage would be unacceptable if they were to lose access to their systems again with the number of patients now moving through their care. They needed a solution that could get them up and running again in less time with limited impact.
Disaster Recovery is a solution that protects an environment, whether physical or in the cloud, by creating an exact copy that a business can access and reimplement if something were to go wrong. In the case of this hospital, storing these copies of their on-premises data centers in the Azure cloud would provide the added benefit of cost savings by removing the need for duplicate hardware or a physical space to store it.
“From both an operational and data protection standpoint, the redundancy provided by Disaster Recovery is crucial for any organization working in the modern world. This is especially true in healthcare, where doctors rely on the availability of patient data to provide quality care,” says Greg Birdwell, Azure Infrastructure Architect at Quisitive.
Ensuring Regulatory Compliance in the Azure Cloud
Before Quisitive could begin to design a solution, it was important to gain a full picture of the hospital’s current environment. Quisitive did this through a detailed assessment to get a sense of existing inventory, requirements, and compliance.
Quisitive’s assessment began by validating that the hospital’s Azure subscription met all security and compliance requirements. In addition, Quisitive conducted joint sessions between the client and the Quisitive team, where Quisitive not only accessed the Azure environment but also demonstrated that access was secure and compliant.
Azure Site Recovery Offers Native Disaster Recovery that Meets Regulatory Compliance
Once Quisitive felt highly confident in the security of the hospital’s Azure environment, they began to architect a solution that addressed their needs in the event of a disaster.
Quisitive used Azure Site Recovery as the foundation for this solution as it offers ease of deployment, cost-effectiveness, and dependability to its users. Azure Site Recovery is a disaster recovery-as-a-service offering from Microsoft that is native to Azure and allows organizations to deploy replication, failover, and recovery processes through Site Recovery to help keep applications running during planned or unplanned outages.
Once access was gained to the hospital’s Azure subscription, Quisitive proceeded to architect and implement the hospital’s Azure Site Recovery environment, including setting up storage and network and performing all work according to security requirements.
Partnership Sets Non-Profit Hospital Up for Success Post-Engagement
A strong disaster recovery strategy does not end with the conclusion of the engagement. To ensure the hospital’s internal IT team was prepared to continue the strategy as designed, Quisitive provided instructions on how to retrieve and install the Azure Site Recovery Process Server on-premises from the Azure distributed OVF file.
Once the Azure Site Recovery Process Server was installed, Quisitive connected it to the Azure Site Recovery environment so the process server could register on-premises VMs that will be protected with Azure Site Recovery.
Agents were then manually installed on each of the VMs due to the small sample of machines. The datacenter agents were installed by the client’s internal team with Quisitive providing technical guidance and consultation. Once the agents were installed, replication was able to begin and continue on a predetermined schedule.
Once failover testing was completed successfully, Quisitive conducted knowledge transfer sessions to share steps necessary to perform a failover test, ensuring the client’s team was fully prepared to take over the process from Quisitive once the engagement was complete.
“The last step in our engagements focused on disaster recovery is always to test the failover mechanism. We want to ensure we have filled all gaps and that the environment is in a state that allows the client to run with it,” said John Sanchez, Azure Architect at Quisitive, “We work to include the client’s team throughout the full engagement process to provide full details of the documentation and process. Our goal is to be a true partner and really act as an extension of their team”.
Protection for the Future Provides Peace of Mind for Doctors and Patients Alike
By implementing Azure Disaster Recovery, this non-profit hospital will be able to provide reliable care while keeping their vital systems and applications available, securing sensitive data, reducing costs, and maintaining regulatory compliance.
“Quisitive is proud to be able to provide this valuable service to our clients. We understand that disaster recovery is an important component for any organization’s cloud strategy, and we are glad we are able to provide the relief that comes with knowing your systems are protected from the unexpected and unknown.”
– Rob Carek, Director, Global Solution Development, Quisitive