How LUMC monitors all its IT systems with Paessler PRTG Enterprise Monitor
Originally published on July 29, 2022 by Patrick Gebhardt
Last updated on July 29, 2022 • 8 minute read
Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC) is the teaching hospital associated with Leiden University/Netherlands. The hospital is a partnership between Leiden University Hospital (AZL) and the Faculty of Medicine at Leiden University.
iAbout Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC)
LUMC is a modern university medical center for research, education, and patient care with a high-quality profile and a strong scientific orientation. At the LUMC students are trained in lifelong innovation and learning. Researchers let themselves be inspired and test their findings directly in practice. Patients can count on being helped according to the state-of-the-art of science. The LUMC believes in curing but also prevention.
LUMC is a university hospital with numerous departments providing specialist care. One aspect essential to providing this care is smooth-functioning IT. The hospital has a central IT team to monitor the network and there are IT specialists working in the various departments at the hospital. The health of the network is monitored 24 hours a day.
In 2019, LUMC decided to switch to a new network monitoring system. Eventually,
they picked Paessler PRTG. They wanted to work with a system where various elements could be monitored from within a single environment.
“We started implementing PRTG towards the end of that year, and from then on things all happened quickly. We chose PRTG because of the large number of users, its flexibility, and the ability to monitor medical equipment,” explains Bouwman.
And that has gone down very well. The central IT team that works with PRTG, representing 1.5 FTEs, gave rave reviews – as did the end-users in the various departments. The system proved so popular that the initial license soon turned out to be too small. “Owing to its popularity among our colleagues, we upgraded last year and are now using Paessler PRTG Enterprise Monitor. There are now about 20 servers within LUMC using PRTG and 1,000 servers monitored by PRTG. To inspire enthusiasm among my colleagues, I arranged in-house training sessions.”
Working with PRTG
Bouwman claims the installation of PRTG was very easy and implementation went
smoothly. Following the initial setup, it has been a matter of expanding and developing.
“Implementing PRTG Enterprise Monitor went very smoothly, which was great. We consulted Paessler’s Knowledge Base to help. It holds a great deal of useful information.”
The various departments at the hospital are free to decide for themselves how
they organize their monitoring. The neonatal department (NICU), for instance, has
outsourced monitoring to third parties. “Our role as central IT team here is then to
monitor that monitoring. So we can always be confident everything is working properly. But the departments themselves always decide whether or not to convert their systems
to PRTG. Either way, it’s easy for us to add them to PRTG.”
LUMC previously also worked with another monitoring tool (SCOM). But now that they’re working with PRTG, the hospital has noticed that the PRTG interface is a lot faster. And the way information is displayed when you open a sensor is very intuitive. “With Paessler, we can see all the crucial information together at a glance. This provides instant insight into what is going on. We even display the dashboards around the hospital on large TV screens. This means all staff gets the same important information.”
PRTG runs virtually at LUMC. To monitor the monitoring system, LUMC has opted for
a second PRTG environment that is set up to monitor the first system. The second
environment is physical, says Bouwman, to monitor the virtual servers. “PRTG gives
us confidence and total oversight of our current systems status. This significantly
reduces the burden on the healthcare sector.”
“In 2019, we decided to switch to a new network monitoring system. The requirement at the time was to work with a system where various elements could be monitored from within a single environment. This means monitoring the health of the network 24 hours a day.”
Willem Bouwman, Technical Applications Manager at LUMC
Bouwman even dares to say that every user within his organization is full of enthusiasm, if only because of the popularity of the system. Colleagues from other departments are curious and come and take a look at the monitoring system. Every hospital department that uses PRTG can set up its environment. “It’s the power of flexibility that makes PRTG a serious proposition. This means departments can decide for themselves what they want to monitor. In Radiotherapy, they went completely wild! That’s something I like to see. The freedom to organize things yourself is a real advantage.”
This freedom is also reflected in how the API is used. “We have built up our own Data Warehouse. We now have more than 1,000 servers monitored by PRTG. It is the perfect solution for monitoring extremely broadly and flexibly,” concludes Bouwman.
One example of this is the availability of the HiX environment. This is the central application for the transmission and processing of patient-related data from LUMC. PRTG monitors the HiX environment 24/7 with various sensors.
Thanks to consolidation, the sensors show the status of the systems at a glance for those responsible.
Willem Bouwman works as part of the central IT team at LUMC. Together with his
colleague Diana, the two of them keep PRTG running in their department.