Cegal helped Northern Norway Regional Health Authority to success with new Oracle platform
Faster, safer and cheaper. That’s the effect after Northern Norway Regional Health Authority moved the DIPS databases to its own, private Oracle Cloud. Oracle specialists from Cegal has led the technical part of the project. (Photo: University Hospital of North Norway)
At the end of April 2021, DIPS was moved to a new Oracle platform in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority, and the positive effects were immediate.
“Clinicians experience that it is faster to work in DIPS, and this is due to the performance being significantly better on the new platform”, says Sigurd From, department manager for Application Services in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT.
From has also been the project owner for the project “New infrastructure for Oracle”. The most important tasks have been setting up and installing new Oracle infrastructure in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT’s data center in Tromsø and performing migration of databases from the old to the new platform.
With “New infrastructure for Oracle” Northern Norway Regional Health Authority got rid of technical debt, and mission-critical Oracle solutions have been moved to a modern, private cloud platform. Sigurd From highlights several benefits of the platform:
“A great advantage is that the new platform meets modern requirements for information security. Another advantage is that the new solution is more cost-effective than the previous solution.”
Moved DIPS to the cloud
Moving DIPS, which is the largest database in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority, was the biggest move during the project. The database has been moved to a private cloud, Oracle Exadata Cloud, which is in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority’s own data center. DIPS is the electronic health record system (EHR) that Northern Norway Regional Health Authority uses.
The migration project included encrypted transfer of all databases, upgrading of databases to supported versions, new architecture (Maximum Availability Architecture) and optimization of resources and license use.
“The previous database platform for Northern Norway Regional Health Authority was secure and stable but, was based on an architecture that was optimal several years ago. Things that were ‘best practice’ several years ago are not necessarily the best today. Northern Norway Regional Health Authority has now replaced the older on-prem solution with a future-oriented, optimized and scalable database platform. It provides easier administration, lower costs, even higher security and access to the latest technologies, says technical project manager Ommund Øvrelid in Cegal.
Øvrelid has been the technical project manager, which means that he’s had a complete overview of the progress and challenges for all phases in the establishment of new infrastructure and the migration work to a new platform.
Solid help from Cegal’s Oracle experts
“I’m very proud of the project where we have secured, migrated, tested and put to work the largest database in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority in just four months”
Sigurd From in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT.
During the migration, more than 30 employees from Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT were involved. In addition, everyone who has participated in previous phases of the project, including hired expertise at Oracle Cloud OCI from Cegal.
“An important success factor for us at Northern Norway Regional Health Authority has been to have skilled professionals from Cegal”
Oddne Rasmussen, Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT
“The fact that we had skilled consultants who know both Oracle Exadata and Exadata Cloud has been extremely important in reaching the goal in record time with the migration. The database group at Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT has it’s own skilled people, but getting other impulses, further training and “more hands” has been crucial. The collaboration with SYSCO has been very good, says Oddne Rasmussen, Leader of Database & Network in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT.
Øvrelid praises the expertise at Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT:
“To be able to succeed with a critical IT project like this, the application owners at the customer must be involved in the deadlines that have been set. An IT project is often successful when the customer also has very competent employees at all levels.”
He points out that Northern Norway Regional Health Authority provided a skilled project manager with good knowledge of the various domain managers and application owners, and that Northern Norway Regional Health Authority has very skilled database administrators and a team lead with deep technical professional knowledge.
"Cegals specialists were a support and contributed with training and backup for the actual migration work that Northern Norway Regional Health Authority ICT largely carried out themselves. Northern Norway Regional Health Authority’s application owners are also very skilled and knew exactly which tests and verifications that needed to be performed to quickly make the necessary verifications during test and production migrations, says technical project manager Øvrelid in Cegal.
The migration project started in October 2020 and was completed in June 2021. This was a complicated “lift and shift” or “move and improve” project. This means taking on-prem solutions that are transferred to a cloud platform (in this case a private Oracle Cloud - OCI) while optimizing and adjusting the systems. Some systems could be moved “as-is”, while others were updated to the latest Oracle versions.
“In such projects you always carry with you ‘technological debt’, or the need to make changes. And there is no such thing as just a small change. All changes require testing and verifications. They have consequences and lead to changes in plans”
Audun Hoff, Cloud Architect in Oracle Norway, praises the efforts in this project.
“I don’t think I have been involved in a project and production where there has been such good control at all phases of the project”.