Let’s start off this blog post with a universal truth: If your company does not have any type of backups in place, you are in serious trouble. Backups are an essential part of any business plan- going hand in hand with your disaster recovery and business continuity strategies.
But, there are so many different types of backups out there these days, how do you know what the best choice is for your business? That’s where this blog series comes in. Over the next several weeks we are going to be looking at all different industries and offering our expert-level advice on the type of backups that we recommend for these companies. Let’s get started!
First up, the healthcare industry. This industry includes everything from major hospitals to small walk-in clinics, and they all have some very important features in common: They can’t lose even a single piece of information, and they can’t afford any downtime. In this industry you are dealing with the well-being of other people, and depending on your organization, maybe even life and death situations. A lost piece of data or an extended period of downtime may make the difference between life and death for a patient. That’s why backups and disaster recovery strategies are so crucial to this industry.
With the immense amount of information healthcare organizations need to keep, it is likely to assume that they will have a server. In this situation, we recommend two things- StorageCraft for local backups, and Doyenz for offsite.
StorageCraft will allow you to take a full image backup, which is the backup of everything on the server (also known as a bare metal restore image), and you can customize the backup routine to run as often as you like. So, for example, you can have one full image backup every night, and then any changes backed up every hour. StorageCraft also has a great virtual spin-up option. This means that if for some reason a computer crashes, or there is a slight power surge that knocks out your server, you have the ability to bring back up everything you need in a virtual environment.
In this situation, StorageCraft is only being used for local backups. That means that all of these backups are going to a physical piece of hardware being kept in your office. So, you want to have an off-site backup strategy as well. This means your backups will also be going to a piece of hardware that is not stored in your office. There are several options available for off-site backups, and we recommend using Doyenz. StorageCraft does have an off-site backup solution, so if you prefer to keep things under one roof you can use them. Both StorageCraft and Doyenz are HIPAA compliant. We’ve found that Doyenz is more financially feasable, especially for small and medium-sized organizations, and, like StorageCraft, provides great customer service.
One important point to make is that an essential element of off-site backups is your Internet Service Provider (ISP). If you have a slow internet connection backing up to an off-site solution will be incredibly difficult and slow. This will also mean that in the rare occasion you need to access your off-site backups, it will be incredibly slow and difficult to work with.
It is important to have both when you are dealing with really critical data. If something should happen to your office, such as a big power outage or a fire, having off-site backups mean that you won’t lose anything. Doyenz comes with a feature of being able to spin up everything in the Cloud, which means that minimal time will be lost if a disaster should happen. Of course, if there is a fire and you no longer have an office, you will lose a great deal of time- but it won’t be because you couldn’t get your network back up and running.
The cost of this whole backup solution won’t be cheap. But setting up your backups is really one area you don’t want to skimp on. Especially within the healthcare industry, when every moment counts, when people need their prescriptions, and doctors need health history information, we strongly recommend investing as much as possible into making sure your backup solution is flawless.
Questions about backups for healthcare organizations? Ask away in the comments section!