CHOA opens data center in Duluth

DULUTH -- Children's Healthcare of Atlanta has opened an $8 million data center that houses computer servers and other hardware that power websites.

The data center will employ 32 people, but could handle almost double that, said CHOA Public Relations Coordinator Brant Rawls adding that the data center plays a key role in increasing the effectiveness and efficiency in the way the hospital gives care, and it helps the hospital remain at the forefront of healthcare technology. The 11,000-square-foot facility is located near a CHOA campus at Satellite Boulevard.

Rawls said the new facility replaces an old data center.

"The solution soon became clear and our technology department embarked on the ambitious endeavor of building a new, state-of-the-art data center," Rawls said. "A process that would require moving the old architecture and data into a new facility."

Rawls said a data center essentially functions as the central nervous system of an organization, and on most data migration projects, everything shuts down for about three days. That wasn't an option because a patient would have been affected, so the transition proved to be minimal for caregivers and didn't compromise a patient, he said.

The immediate benefits are improved productivity and easier access to applications so clinicians can spent more time with patients.

It also gives improved service resiliency and fewer outages, Rawls said.