- Industry: Healthcare
- Region: APAC
- Headquarters: Seoul, South Korea
- Company size: 2,400 employees, including 400 doctors and 600 nurses
Konkuk University Medical Center (KUMC) provides high-quality medical services to the people of South Korea. However, its outdated UNIX equipment and proprietary web application server led to high maintenance costs and difficulty collaborating with external groups. KUMC decided to use Red Hat® solutions to build an open source medical information system, gaining a flexible, cost-effective microservices architecture with faster response time and less downtime.
KUMC’s medical information system was built with proprietary solutions that made modifying or upgrading the system impossible without vendor support. This dependence hindered KUMC’s ability to respond quickly to government research opportunities. “Since [the old system] was dependent on a single vendor, our developers were not satisfied with the system,” said Je-kwan Lee, a senior research engineer on the information team at Konkuk University Medical Center. In addition, exchanging data with other medical organizations and government agencies was very difficult as the system could not integrate with these groups’ IT interfaces. The system also had heavy concurrent traffic, resulting in slow response and reboot times that increased downtime.
To ensure high performance and reliability, as well as integration with third-party medical groups, KUMC decided to standardize its system on vendor-agnostic, open source software. The center used Red Hat solutions and worked closely with Red Hat Consulting and local open source consulting company Open Naru to design and pilot the project, completing the implementation in just 4 months. The center also invested in Red Hat Learning Subscription for training to help its staff transition easily. “Red Hat helped us address issues immediately. They played an important role in overcoming prejudices, like ‘open source is hard to manage’ or ‘open source takes a long time to adopt,’” said Je-kwan.
With its new microservices-based system, KUMC has improved system availability and reliability—achieving 3 times faster response times. Also, developers can now provision and configure environments in just 2 hours instead of 2-3 months. KUMC also gained the flexibility to connect to external organizations’ systems so it can quickly collaborate. And with open source software, KUMC has reduced its operating and maintenance costs to only 20% of the previous system’s total cost of ownership (TCO). “Before, maintenance costs took up much of our budget. After we reduced our operating costs and TCO with Red Hat, we can now allocate budget to more valuable areas, such as government projects,” said Je-kwan.