The Trust has selected BridgeHead’s independent clinical archive HealthStore® to support its application decommissioning program while ensuring that all data remains accessible during its 25-year retention period.
Leatherhead, UK – September 21, 2022 – University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust (UHDB), a healthcare provider serving people in the historic Peak District, South Derbyshire and parts of Staffordshire; has contracted with BridgeHead Software to provide software and services to support its application decommissioning program. Initially, BridgeHead’s HealthStore® stand-alone clinical archive will be used to migrate data from Trust’s legacy iSoft Clinical Manager (iCM) and emergency department information systems (EDIS), with other outdated applications targeted for retirement in the future.
UHDB identifies the risk of legacy applications
Following a 2018 merger of Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Burton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust is now one of the largest NHS Trusts in the country, with five hospitals spread across the region, which employing 12,000 staff, and serving a population of over one million.
As part of an ongoing digital transformation project, the Derby site is currently standardizing its core systems and programmatically transferring functionality and data from older applications to more modern systems. In addition to its goals of centralizing information so that it is accessible throughout the Trust, UHDB also identified a need to decommission its legacy application estate.
As Mark Chester, Head of Digital Technology at University Hospitals Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, explained, “At UHDB, we have a number of applications that are no longer in active use, but contain clinical data that still needs to be accessed from time to time, either for clinical purposes or as part of our audit processes. In addition, we are also obliged to keep this data for 25 years. However, some of these apps run on outdated operating systems and old hardware, neither of which have a viable upgrade path. Therefore, to mitigate system vulnerabilities and potential security risks, we had to find a way to shut down these applications while securing the data they contain for continued access. Additionally, we understand that the cost and risk of running legacy systems continually increase over time, so we decided to do something about it now.”
There were many factors that drove UHDB’s decision to retire its legacy applications. Clearly, protecting Trust data was high on the agenda, especially given the current prevalence of ransomware, malware, and other cyberattacks specifically targeting healthcare organizations. But in addition, UHDB understood the significant costs associated with maintaining its heritage of legacy applications. In addition to license costs (for example, read-only licenses), associated annual maintenance and support charges, costs for storage, power, cooling, etc.; there are also general staff costs. Many legacy applications require specialized IT skills to support the software and/or hardware. Ensuring that the IT team maintains these skills takes time and money. As a general rule, the older the legacy systems, the rarer these skills become, and therefore more expensive over time.
UHDB Chooses BridgeHead’s HealthStore® Independent Clinical Record Solution
After researching the options available on the market, UHDB quickly made the decision to work with BridgeHead Software on this initiative. “This project required a strategic future-proof solution, not only for immediate application retirement work, but one that could be extended for use in other parts of the Trust. We needed to protect our data and eliminate the threat of cyber attacks; reduce the costs associated with our legacy applications, all while providing our users with ongoing access to the information they need, when they need it. There were very few vendors that offered a comprehensive data management platform that could meet our current and ongoing requirements. Therefore, choosing BridgeHead’s HealthStore® was a relatively easy decision,” explained Mr. Chester.
BridgeHead’s HealthStore® provides a central, standards-based repository that brings together patient, clinical, and administrative data of all types and formats from across a healthcare enterprise. Once in the HealthStore, that data is not only stored efficiently and securely protected, but can be easily accessed by clinicians and support staff, whenever and wherever needed, either directly through an interface web-based or through other healthcare systems, such as an EPR or clinical portal.
When asked about the HealthStore acquisition process, Mr. Chester commented: “Developing a business case for the project was pretty straightforward. In addition to the benefits that naturally arise from data protection and easy access to patient information for our physicians and other users, Trust will generate significant cost savings just by retiring the initial two applications. Part of these savings will be used to offset the cost of the HealthStore; the rest can be used for other projects.”
BridgeHead Software has been a long-standing provider of its RAPid™ data protection solution, providing backup and disaster recovery for the MEDITECH EHR running on the Burton site. The relationship, which spanned more than a decade, provided the Trust with peace of mind in making the decision to acquire HealthStore, not least because of the positive experience both teams had enjoyed over the years.
Jim Beagle, President and CEO of BridgeHead Software, comments: “At BridgeHead, we believe that data is the lifeblood of healthcare. Forward-thinking healthcare organizations such as University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, who are taking a strategic approach to managing their data, understand the value and impact this information has on care delivery and business. of medical care. With hospitals being prime targets for cybercriminals, we commend UHDB for taking a proactive stance in taking down potentially vulnerable legacy applications and mitigating the risks associated with ransomware and malware. We look forward to working closely with the UHDB team to offer the HealthStore and enable the Trust to get their app retirement program.”
About University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust
University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, one of the largest NHS trusts in the country, covers the historic Peak District and South Derbyshire. The Trust has five hospitals across the region, the largest being the newly built Royal Derby Hospital. The Trust employs 13,000 people, serves a population of over one million and provides clinical services in 48 specialties.
Royal Derby Hospital’s latest inspection was found to be ‘Good’ and we have a range of services that are nationally recognised. Our other hospitals include the Queen’s Hospital Burton for acute cases and Sir Robert Peel Community Hospitals in Tamworth, Samuel Johnson in Lichfield and Florence Nightingale in Derby.
As a teaching hospital, we work closely with our partners Derby University, and we are also a very active research trust. In addition, our orthopedic and trauma service is one of the largest in the country and the trust also includes Southern Derbyshire and Burton Children’s Hospital.
About BridgeHead Software
With over 25 years of storage and data management experience, BridgeHead Software is trusted by over 1,200 hospitals worldwide. Today, BridgeHead helps healthcare facilities meet the challenges of rising data volumes and rising storage costs, while providing peace of mind on how to consolidate, store, protect, and share clinical and administrative information.
BridgeHead’s healthcare data management solutions are designed to work with the storage hardware and applications of choice for any hospital, regardless of vendor, providing more choice, flexibility and control over how data is managed, now and in the future. For more information visit or follow on Twitter at @BridgeHeadHDM.
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