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CIO Introduces IT Strategy Using InterSystems’ Post-relational Database Across National Indian Health Services Network

Cambridge, Mass.—February 10, 2003—Spotlighting IT innovations emerging in the healthcare sector, InterSystems Corporation today announced that the Shiprock, N.M., unit of the Indian Health Service (IHS) is leveraging CACHÉ rapid application development (RAD) functionality and high performance in the rollout of a family of CACHÉ-based Web applications. Information on the leading-edge applications was made available this week at the HIMSS 2003 conference in San Diego.

The commitment to Web development grew from what the Shiprock service unit’s CIO calls a graphical user Web interface (GUWI) strategy. “It’s a strategy developed to provide the highest quality healthcare in the most cost-effective way,” CIO Tom Duran says. The unit’s service area includes portions of New Mexico, Utah and Arizona. A 5,000-mile network carries information to healthcare professionals who serve a patient population including more than 50,000 Native Americans. Healthcare facilities include the 52-bed Navajo Medical Center in Shiprock, two health centers and two health stations.

“The geography we cover makes the Web the logical platform choice for new application development,” says Duran. “And, since one of the key components of our IT strategy is to do everything we can to put critical information literally in the palm of the physician’s hand, wireless support for handhelds and portable devices favored by physicians is being provided for all new applications.”

Database RAD, Performance, Reliability

With the GUWI strategy as the foundation, Duran and his staff began development of what they’ve dubbed the E-Series application family in February, 2002. “Our developers are completely committed to this strategy. That’s why we call these applications the E-Series…’E’ stands for excellence.”

The RAD capabilities, high performance and 24 x 7 reliability offered by CACHÉ made it Duran’s database choice. “We built the initial version of E-Verify, the first application in the E-Series, in just 12 hours,” recalls Mike Pike, information technology specialist, application software. To date, more than a quarter million verifications have been handled by E-Verify, which verifies insurance eligibility for service center patients at any IHS location.

Four E-Series applications have been built and deployed over the last year on a framework that includes a server running CACHÉ in a Red Hat Linux operating environment. The benefits of Web-based information access and the high performance delivered by CACHÉ were immediately evident. “People find the performance hard to believe,” says Duran. “With E-Verify, for example, we’re getting subsecond response time even though verifications involve searching 1.6 million records.” As a result, use of the E-Series applications is rapidly spreading. E-Trax, a Web-based IT help desk, was released nationally to IHS service units in late January and multiple groups have already signed up to use it.

Scheduled for the next E-Series deployment is a Web-based patient record application. In line with the GUWI strategy, a prototype will be submitted to a physician review panel to ensure that clinical information needs are fulfilled as effectively as possible.

“The approach to application implementation and deployment evidenced by Shiprock service center’s E-series is indicative of the creative mindset of those using CACHÉ database technology,” observes Paul Grabscheid, InterSystems vice president of strategic planning. “It’s a real pleasure to partner with these healthcare technology developers in their new application initiatives.”

About InterSystems

Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., InterSystems Corporation ( is a leading provider of low-maintenance, high performance database systems for Web applications, with over four million users worldwide. InterSystems’ flagship product, CACHÉ, is a post-relational database that uniquely offers three integrated data access options: a robust object database, high performance SQL and rich multidimensional access. CACHÉ enables rapid Web application development, extraordinary transaction processing speed and real-time queries against transactional data. InterSystems is the leading database provider in healthcare, with CACHÉ in use at the majority of major hospitals and labs around the world, including America’s 10 best hospitals as rated by U.S. News and World Report.

Trademark Notes:  Caché is a trademark of InterSystems Corporation.  Other trademarks belong to their respective owners.

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Shoor & Company
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Maureen Flaherty
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