St. Luke’s Health Gets Strategic about Data Management


St. Luke’s is a nonprofit health system based in Idaho, operating clinics and medical centers across the state. The organization was honored by Fortune/IBM Watson Health for the eighth straight year as a Top 15 health system. Like many healthcare providers, St. Luke’s has years of clinical data in storage – some of it critical to retain and much of it best suited for archives – but everything is stored in expensive on-premises NAS.

“We have 20 years of files from various medical systems and we have been treating all data the same,” says Brett Sayles, storage engineer with St. Luke’s.

We are nearing capacity on our NetApp and Pure Storage, and we know that a lot of these files can go to cheaper storage.

The capacity issues have also strained the organization’s abilities to retain snapshots for disaster recovery purposes. Currently, St. Luke’s is only able to store three days worth of snapshots and with ransomware threats an urgent reality, this puts data at risk.

St. Luke’s data ecosystem:
  • Total amount of unstructured data: 1PB
  • NAS solutions in use: NetApp, Qumulo
  • Data Management: Komprise
  • Object solutions in use: Azure, AWS
  • Backup solutions in use: Veeam
  • Snapshot solutions in use: Pure, NetApp, Qumulo
  • DR solutions in use: Zerto
  • Cloud solutions in use: Azure/AWS

Instead of continually buying more primary storage – a costly proposition in healthcare given the size and volume of clinical files and images – St. Luke’s began looking for a data management solution that could facilitate a granular approach to storing its one petabyte of unstructured data and free up the NAS systems for high-priority files and backups.

White Paper: Komprise Transparent Move Technology™ (TMT)

After evaluating several solutions, St. Luke’s chose Komprise as its unstructured data management platform. In the first phase of the project, the storage team will use Komprise to archive data from an 80TB share on Pure Storage Flash to secondary storage on Qumulo spinning disk. Data will be archived according to policies set for specific applications and file types. Next, St. Luke’s will clean up IT department shares and delete files or archive them to Qumulo, using Komprise. Sayles says that Komprise’s transparent move technology™ (TMT) which uses industry-standard symlinks to move data so that users don’t experience any change of access is a great advantage: “Komprise does what it says by being simple.”

The benefits of a data management system for St. Luke’s:
  • Up to 80% savings on storage by moving cold data from Pure to lower-cost Qumolo storage.
  • Increase snapshot storage from freeing up Pure storage capacity, to protect against undetected ransomware.
  • Obtain deeper insight into data by age, owners and usage to better inform data management policies and practices.
  • Leverage Deep Analytics capabilities in Komprise to understand the unique requirements of different clinical file types so that IT can create the optimal storage environment for short and long-term access needs.

Komprise is part of St. Luke’s broader data management evolution to be more strategic, cost-efficient and intelligent with data in order to deliver excellent patient care and meet regulatory requirements. “You can’t do the right the right thing with data if you don’t know what you have,” Sayles says.

Read the TechTarget article: St. Luke’s triages healthcare data management for hospitals

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