Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Army Improves IT Management

According to the newsletter “The Point” published by the Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, the Army Medical Information Technology Center (USAMITC) at Fort Sam Houston, Texas has improved their IT service management processes. USAMITC provides information management and information technology products and services to support the Army Medical Department, the military health system, DOD, and other government clients worldwide.

Improving their IT service management processes provides for better, faster, and cheaper services for their customers and their users to help others provide high quality healthcare. The system is built on the information technology infrastructure library or ITIL, standards that Terry Hessler, USAMITC configuration manager considers to be the most widely accepted approach to IT service management in the world. The ITIL framework promotes process improvements through standardization, common language, and “common sense” changes.

This year, the Southeast Regional Medical Command, USAMITC deployed the ESD which is a consolidated, standard, stable and secure service desk. ESD was deployed throughout the entire Army Medical Command infrastructure, a move to reduce redundancies and achieve significant efficiency improvements and cost savings for the command. The ESD deployment is scheduled for completion my March 2010.

When users from the healthcare provider in the hospital to the medical logistician in theater are impacted by an IT problem, the ESD will be the single point of contact. If an IT issue arises, one number is called or an email sent to one address. This will result in the same level of service no matter the location.

Technicians assist users with a broad range of issues and by using a shared knowledge database, a technician can fix the problem and share that knowledge by putting it on the global database. This helps other technicians at other sites having the same issue so that they can find the solution to resolving the incident.

All Army medical treatment facilities will work together and have access to that shared knowledge database. With technicians looking for new fixes and better ways to do things, efficiency stands to continually increase.