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    Comcast Expedites Transfer of Pathology Test Results

    In healthcare, speed and reliability are critical.


    EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:
    Company

    • Located in Sarasota, Florida, SaraPath Diagnostics has provided individualized pathology specialty services since 1975
    • SaraPath Diagnostics is accredited by the American College of Pathologists, and its physicians are board-certified specialists in anatomic and clinical pathology, with extensive experience and training in tissue diagnosis and analysis.
    Challenge

    • Replace an unreliable and slow communications system with an efficient and flexible networking solution that transmits pathology report results quickly and supports future business growth and service offerings.
    Solution Requirements

    • Reliability: Sara Path physicians need the timely delivery of diagnostic pathology reports.
    • Speed: It must provide the requisite bandwidth to handle increasing data traffic and future service offerings.
    • Scalability: The ideal solution will enhance and support business growth strategies.
    Solutionts

    • Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service.
    • Comcast Business Ethernet Dedicated Internet Service.
    Results

    • Expedites secure transfer of pathology test results, from hours to milliseconds.
    • Provides scalability for business growth strategies.
    • Supports SaraPath’s disaster recovery plan with a diverse and redundant network.
    The Business Challenge:
    SaraPath Diagnostics operates in an extremely aggressive marketplace. Because it competes with nationwide corporations boasting clinical laboratories in most major U.S. cities, SaraPath Diagnostics must process and deliver lab results very quickly and efficiently. Otherwise the hospitals, medical practices, and patients it serves may consider another provider.

    Like many medium-sized businesses, SaraPath Diagnostics implemented T1 and digital subscriber lines for communication purposes and Internet access. Unfortunately, this system didn’t provide the necessary bandwidth for a growing pathology practice. That’s when the IT team began looking for a more flexible and scalable networking solution.

    The Comcast Business Solution:
    At first, Mark J. Pelea, IT Manager at SaraPath Diagnostics, and his colleagues considered building and managing their own network, but that proved to be costly and time-consuming with regard to hardware upgrades and maintenance.

    Then they met the Comcast sales team. Not only could Comcast seamlessly and securely connect three main sites for SaraPath Diagnostics (Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service), it could also provide a reliable and dedicated Internet connection with scalable bandwidth (Comcast Business Ethernet Dedicated Internet Service), plus Comcast provides technical support 24/7.

    “Comcast offered us a more scalable and practical solution,” Pelea explained. “And it is working exactly as we expected. When it’s time to add more remote sites and support more customers, we’ll scale the network. This is a fairly simple process, as opposed to enduring multiple equipment changes if we had built our own network.”

    Indeed, SaraPath Diagnostics achieved its goal of improving connectivity and reliability through a productive communication medium. “From a user’s perspective, we’re seeing something faster, better, and much more efficient. That means faster downloads and faster communication among sites. People really appreciate the speed that the Comcast network provides,” he added.

    Speed and scalability is especially important as SaraPath Diagnostics grows its business. “We’re pushing out more B2B and Web-based solutions for our customers, such as electronic ordering of pathology tests and services, which we could not provide without the Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service,” Pelea said. “This means we have the capability to provide service to any hospital or physician’s office that would like to connect with our system. In fact, we can provide connectivity in a reliable and timely way, which has definitely bolstered our marketing ability.”

    SaraPath Diagnostics trusts Comcast Business to support its disaster recovery initiatives. “We live in an area fraught with hurricanes, so business continuity is key. Comcast gives us the bandwidth necessary for server load balancing, which will ensure high performance and reliability of applications delivered across sites.”

    The Comcast Business Ethernet Dedicated Internet Service will play a major role in the organization’s future use of telepathology. Telepathology utilizes telecommunications technology to facilitate the transfer of real-time image-rich pathology data between remote locations for purposes of diagnosis, education, and research. “Comcast provides the kind of bandwidth and scalability we’ll need to scan deeply intense images from medical slides and transmit them to other sites in real-time via the Comcast Business Ethernet Network. This is a service offering that will put SaraPath Diagnostics into a whole new ballgame,” Pelea concluded.

    The Results:
    Expedites transfer of pathology test results:
    The Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service provides the speed and reliability that SaraPath Diagnostics needs to ensure fast and efficient transmission of pathology test results. The T1 and digital subscriber lines used in the past didn’t provide the bandwidth necessary to transmit these images. That means results were either faxed or couriered to hospitals and medical practices, which could take hours. Now the results are transmitted in milliseconds.

    Provides scalability for business growth:
    In addition to helping SaraPath Diagnostics deliver pathology results more quickly and efficiently than before, Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service helps support the organization’s growing customer base by providing the necessary bandwidth for additional B2B and Web-based solutions for hospitals and medical practices. This includes electronic ordering for tests and services and direct connectivity to its system.

    Supports disaster recovery initiatives and future service offerings:
    The Comcast Business Ethernet Network Service also provides the bandwidth needed to balance server loads for disaster recovery initiatives. In addition, Comcast Business Ethernet Dedicated Internet Service provides the bandwidth and scalability needed to support telepathology services, which place SaraPath Diagnostics on the cutting edge in its field.

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