Kootenai Health (Kootenai) is a regional healthcare provider located in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho that provides healthcare services to patients from northern Idaho, eastern Washington, Montana and the inland northwest. Kootenai Health is anchored by a 246-bed hospital and is embarking on a strategy to aggressively develop their growing regional network of critical access centers, clinics and primary care physician group offices. To support this strategy, Kootenai made the decision to insource their IT service provisioning capability, including their mission critical electronic health record (EHR) system and IT infrastructure services.

“Already recognized nationally as a leader in the quality of healthcare services, by 2020 Kootenai Health is in line to be a comprehensive regional medical center. When we approached T2 Tech, we were aware of their strong track record of delivering value and their results-driven focus. T2 Tech continues to exceed our expectations. They have managed multiple critical IT initiatives while providing substantial savings and creative solutions to maximize the value of our significant investment.”— Steve Garske, Ph.D., Chief Information Officer, Kootenai Health

The Challenge: Improve Kootenai’s Business Continuity And Resiliency

Kootenai’s storage environment was comprised of heterogeneous storage systems that lacked adequate redundancy and backup/restore capabilities. Their single data center design also posed a major threat to business continuity due to multiple single points of failure. In addition, the hospital’s storage environment was unable to practically scale and support future initiatives, including a 2,000-user virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) project.

Vendor Negotiation

T2 Tech’s competitive bidding process and collaboration with Key Info to build a long-term enterprise storage architectural design saved the hospital nearly $1 million.


Performance of crucial applications has improved by as much as 400%.


The new storage environment will scale with future needs and support Kootenai’s growing IT infrastructure for years to come.


Outdated backup technology has been replaced with a multi-tier backup solution, resulting independable, accessible, short-term and long-term backups.

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T2 Tech collaborates with Kootenai to define and meet requirements

T2 Tech Group™ collaborated with Kootenai’s executive, clinical and IT leadership to define their current and future enterprise storage, backup, and restoration/RTO/RPO requirements. Upon finalizing the requirements, a high-level, industry best practices architecture/design and an enterprise storage system RFP was developed. T2 Tech then managed the bid and acquisition process and facilitated vendor selection for the required design, hardware, software, implementation and operational maintenance services. This process included the following industry-leading storage vendors: NetApp, HP, IBM, and EMC.

The Right Partner Helps With Timely And Cost-Effective Implementation

After interviewing multiple value-added resellers (VARs), T2 Tech selected Key Information Systems, Inc. (Key Info) to assist in the final design, acquisition, and implementation process because of their excellent track record and experienced engineering resources. The IBM V7000 Unified Storage Array was selected for production storage because of its performance characteristics, feature set and ability to utilize the hospital’s existing storage array as lower-tier storage for disaster recovery, which further reduced the solution’s overall cost.

This centralized, highly-available, redundant enterprise storage solution provided numerous benefits. Each of the hospital’s existing storage environments are now virtualized and centrally managed through a single interface. The nightly backup and restore processes are also centrally managed with Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM). The use of Easy-Tier Technology along with a mix of solid state and hard disk drives enabled both performance improvements and cost reductions, and they increased disk space by 600%. Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TSPC) provides continual monitoring, reporting and capacity planning, and the use of Global Mirror provides data replication between sites for business continuity and disaster recovery. This project was implemented on time and under budget without interruption to hospital services. T2 Tech’s competitive bidding process and collaboration with Key Info saved the hospital nearly $1 million.

Next Steps For Kootenai And T2 Tech

T2 Tech is working with Kootenai Health to assess their network and data center environment, and manage multiple IT infrastructure projects in support of their strategic IT objectives. Active projects include the following: network infrastructure re-architecture, virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) design and deployment, Active Directory refresh and consolidation, Exchange refresh and migration, VoIP design and implementation, and Helpdesk design and deployment.

About T2 Tech Group

T2 Tech Group specializes in tackling difficult technology challenges and transforming IT liabilities into valuable assets for clients in a range of industries. Since its founding in 2006, T2 Tech has built a reputation for delivering high-quality technology consulting and management advisory services to executives and IT leaders. Unlike many consulting firms, T2 Tech has no financial interest in vendor selection, freeing the company to focus completely on realizing customer goals. At T2 Tech, we advocate for our clients; approach each project with no bias; and practice the highest levels of integrity, experience and expertise. For more information about T2 Tech Group, visit t2techgroup.com and connect with us on Twitter @T2TechGroup.

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