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Healthcare M&A, the New Norm

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are happening more routinely and quicker than ever in healthcare.  These events are extremely complex and challenging for people, process and technology.  With the right foundation and operational models in place IT can greatly reduce the risk, cost and complexity of these changes.  Executing on a Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) are the foundational platforms that enable this.

In 2015 alone there are huge mergers in the payer space with the Aetna purchasing Humana and Anthem announcing they will be buying Cigna.  Healthcare systems are heavily involved in M&A as well.  This year Barnabas Health and Robert Wood Johnson Health System in New Jersey combined systems, forming New Jersey’s largest health system.  Community Health Systems is spinning off 38 smaller facilities and forming Quorum Health Corporation with the goal of creating a company that can acquire hospitals in small markets.  Hundreds of smaller acquisitions never make the news, but they are just as disruptive to those practices and healthcare systems.

M&A Challenges

These mergers and spins are very challenging for organizations.  Supply chains, HR, financial reporting, payer relationships, governmental reporting and all other processes are impacted.  What is one key area that underpins each and every one of these operations in a modern healthcare system?  You guessed it, IT.  Add the complexities of merging disparate systems along with the stress and emotions that can accompany these deals, and you have a recipe for a very complex and risky program.  If not executed well the IT mergers can be a source of patient care issues, large scale security risks, large financial impacts and lead to long term challenges in the merging of cultures.

From an IT perspective no matter how large or complex the transaction there are four basic questions that have to be answered for every merger:

  • How quickly can I get the newly acquired leadership onto e-mail?
  • How quickly can we connect the network to enable the sharing of business critical applications and data?
  • How much will the IT integration cost?
  • How do I comply with local, state, federal and accrediting organization’s data retention standards?

vCloud for Healthcare – Enabling M&A

VMware is uniquely positioned in technology and healthcare to enable quicker, smoother and more secure transitions for organizations going through M&A activities.  The vCloud for Healthcare architecture with its Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) architecture can eliminate physical moves and wrap those efforts into software based activities.  These activities are supported by

  • Security
  • Compliance
  • Mobility
  • Private Cloud
  • Hybrid Cloud
  • Public Cloud
  • Underpinned by Network, Compute and Storage virtualization technologies

hc2

M&A activities are disruptive to even the most efficient operationally sound organization.  Decoupling IT operations from the physical world, moving the infrastructure management into software allows for flexibility, agility, security, and reporting like we have never had before in the industry.

Over the next several blog posts I will expand on how each of these technologies build a platform that allows for the flexibility and agility needed to take IT infrastructure worries out of M&A.

The Healthcare Security Conundrum

It seems like ages ago the HIPAA guidelines were adopted. It got a bit more complex as the HITECH requirements and financial implications increased. Following that, Meaningful Use Stage 2, encryption and the like is creating some additional technical challenges. Protecting patient data and secure it using best practices that your organization can muster has been the goal. Fast-forward to today, all of the rules still apply, but the game has changed, hacking and breaches from unidentified and even foreign organizations and their intent is even murkier has raised the ante. They know the value of healthcare records and they have had some success at capturing them.

There was a Dustin Hoffman movie from the 1976, ‘Marathon Man’ (yes I am exposing my vintage); the simple question by the antagonist was ‘is it safe’? Poor Dustin Hoffman did not know what, where, how, why and when. He, as well as the audience was the receiver of the pain and fear. We find ourselves a similar situation; instead of diamonds it is our health records at risk. There is financial value in our health records, but the bad actors may not be out for only financial gain, it also affects brand value and reputation. The risks and stakes are high and the intruders may already be in our systems just looking around for something interesting.

So the ‘fear, uncertainty and doubt’ routine has reached our executives and they want to know ‘What can we do to prevent this from happening to us?’ Our teams are doing their best to train our consumers of IT services not to ‘click on that link’. The intrigue and creativeness of the hackers are sometimes unbelievable.

There are many examples both inside healthcare and other industries; however, healthcare is a target since the value of a health record is more than just a credit card number. In case you are interested: (HHS Breach Report). The net result is the top ten breaches for the last about 3 years is responsible for 136 million records. At a value of $ 150 per record has a potential street value of $20 billion.

Hence the fact that healthcare is a target.

How does VMware approach this area:

First, it is not a product; it is an approach, a layered approach that involves different organizations. Not one company can solve this complex area alone.

Our approach starts with an assessment to help to understand your security risks. We also work with several organizations that can help you assess your risk. We provide free tools to provide some immediate feedback. We follow that with a ‘Hardening Guide’, which is a step-by-step approach to remediating the risks to your virtual environments. One of the capabilities allows for workloads be better isolated through distributed firewall. This approach may include hardware, software and or services.

We have just completed a white paper for you to explore the VMware concept of Security and Network Virtualization for Healthcare (VMware Healthcare Security Whitepaper) and although we may not be able to catch the villain of this story, but we can ‘protect our house.’

The next generation clinical workspace – making for a better Digital Health experience.

We have already entered the era of digital health. However, today it is far from an efficient model.  Interconnectivity standards are more proprietary than open, resulting in a fragmented and ineffective model.  Currently, Digital Health itself is not healthy.  Digital Health is a rapidly evolving agglomeration of applications, interfaces, devices, workflows, along with other related technologies and communication patterns to address improving health along with “usual” and critical health issues for individuals and the communities we live in.  But because it is still evolving, it is both very unstructured and siloed, and yet very open to influence and thought leadership.

VMware is developing strategic partnerships with many of the leading healthcare vendors. These are beginning to both demonstrate how our technologies benefit theirs, along with beginning to build integrated solutions that are beginning to play more prominently in healthcare.  A good number of our solutions are now influencing and shaping how Digital Health will mature.  We must focus on making it easier for physicians, clinicians, and support staff to work with patients and their electronic health data.  The technologies that we are building are the future enablement of delivering the next iteration of Digital Health.  We are rapidly becoming the portal, the preferred clinical workspace, for healthcare.

Instead of re-hashing all of the known issues as to how it is broken, I want to focus on what will the clinical workspace for healthcare will look like in a few years from now. This is important for all of us who are charged with delivering EUC healthcare solutions to help drive the solution forward and make it meaningful.

First of all, the right approach to answer this question is from the caregiver perspective. What are their requirements, their needs, of the workspace?  My reasoning for this approach is that the caregiver is the data entry point for most of a patient’s electronic health data.  Physicians struggle with being reduced to be “data entry specialists”, because they are also a primary consumer of their patient’s health information.  This especially drives the need for the clinical workspace to be re-designed.

Short version: they need a single unified view to the correct mix of applications, to collect and reference relevant health data, including available digitally enabled devices, to engage only the relevant clinical workflows, to diagnose, establish the correct care pattern and meet the patient’s unique healthcare need, from any location, and at any specific moment of their day from any type of technology available to them.

The technology involving the clinical workspace is only the enablement of access to the application(s), it is an extension of the clinical workflow and care pattern in play. The behind the scenes technology must be seamless and invisible to those using it.  The technology must get out of it’s own way, and enable the clinician to do their job.  The caregiver should not be forced to think about the technology and how it is used.  I am being very deliberate to avoid describing a physical workstation.  Because ultimately, the care-giver needs to access their clinical workspace from any device at any time from any location.

In the not too distant future, the next generation clinical workspace will include the ability to:

    • Be highly interactive with the patient, the patient’s visitors, the location, the environment of the care being given, the care givers involved, the medical community at large. Based on prior authorized communications, along with immediate patient consents, the interactions will enable communications with all involved during the episode or care. It may even use social media circles to guide who can and who cannot interact with the patient.
    • Contextually secure the workspace, by being aware of those who are privileged and must have access to PHI to provide care, and equally aware to flag and report on any unauthorized access or information movement related to the episode of care in progress. Various forms of two-factor authentication mechanisms will be available, used to authenticate caregivers to the patient, creating a unified identity, to immediate family assisting in medical decisions, even to the patient’s visitors, guiding the caregivers to the level of detail of medical information that can be communicated.
    • Deliver the unique blended mix of applications and information that pertains to the patient, yet are designed to present the best workflows and patterns of care for caregivers to follow, or collaborate with other caregivers. The applications will sense and adapt to the endpoint being used to communicate the information in a consistent relevant format.
    • Support location based computing, with clinically oriented geo-fencing and real time locating systems, enabling contextually aware apps to appear/disappear from the workspace, based on the care required, along with the same app being dynamically reconfigured to access information relevant to the care the patient is receiving.
    • Display context enabled dashboards that pertain to user specific workflows. The dashboards indicate the next step in the workflow and the appropriate user(s) who are responsible for that task.
    • Use natural language processing as one of the primary data gathering mechanisms within the EHR and other critically relevant clinical applications along with a verbal command capability such as Siri or Cortana.
    • Use the camera of the mobile device as a data gathering and assist in diagnosis. Specific examples would be to take a series of pictures of a laceration to document the wound, it’s stitches and bandaging, or use an infrared camera to assist in diagnosing increased localized temperature from an internal infection or injury. The picture will include digitally augmented overlays identifying the size, depth and other unique observations of the wound.
    • Be technically aware of the immediate surrounding medical technologies available, based on either medical need or workflow, to wirelessly interface with required medically necessary data feeds and information sources. It will pre-authorize and enable connections to those devices and patient care workflows, and provide feedback that those are initiated and completed. It would including devices such as a Fitbit, or Apple’s Watch, or a patient’s smartphone that may be collecting biometric information prior and during an injury. This interconnectivity feature will differentiate the haves from the have-nots.
    • Access personally stored health data in our personal “clouds”. Just like us keeping our music in iTunes, critical files in Dropbox, and pictures in Instagram, we will begin to use the cloud for the amalgamation, or a digital timeline, of all of our healthcare events. This enables a consistent representation and communication of all our health events whenever and however needed.

The next generation clinical workspace described above is not Digital Health, but instead what the core technologies of digital health need to look like. It will take the collective experimentation and collaboration of many to evolve the next generation of Digital Health.  It is very apparent that healthcare itself is no longer just provided in an inpatient, outpatient, or tertiary location.  Instead, it is wherever and however a patient and caretaker interaction occurs, including telehealth.

This is where the VMware Horizon ecosystem differentiates itself. From the caretaker perspective, it is the only highly integrated nascent technology that uniquely reduces healthcare workflow friction.  It aligns itself to a fast paced workspace, filled with interruptions, and seamlessly transitions healthcare workflows from user to user as they move from event to event, location to location, ultimately enabling patients to heal faster and return to their normal lives.

A call to action for those of us involved with delivering VMware solutions to healthcare organizations. We need to continue to deepen our relationships and integration with our EMR vendor partners.  We also need to continue to identify and align with new innovative healthcare and technologies vendors, to create new delivery solutions to meet the demands of the next gen clinical workspace.  Finally, as we meet with healthcare delivery organizations, we need to be listening to differentiating input and critique from the caregivers themselves on how best to implement digital health via a clinical workspace.   Together, collaboratively, we can bring about THE desired next generation clinical workspace for the healthcare industry.

The Changing Face of Healthcare Security – Leveraging a Zero Trust Model to Protect Your Critical Assets

Post for Chris Logan, Senior Healthcare Strategist, VMware, MBA, CISSP, by Tony Amaddio Senior Healthcare Strategist, VMware

The trend of health data breaches for 2015 is staggering. As of October 23rd, the breach tally has affected over 113 million individuals. More importantly, the top six breaches this year have impacted 109.6 million individuals, which accounts for 96 percent of the currently reported incidents so far. What I find to be intriguing about these recent breaches is they all involve hacking attacks, which up until this year, were a rarity in healthcare.

As of October 2015, the official tally of major healthcare breaches since September 2009 listed 1,374 breaches affecting a total of 153.8 million individuals. That means that this year alone, the six recent hacker attack breaches account for nearly 71 percent of all victims over the six year reporting period. One of those attacks, health insurer Anthem, affected nearly 79.8 million individuals, over 50 percent of the total number of individuals impacted since 2009!

This is new territory for healthcare. Could it be due to a lack of focus on cybersecurity or is it due specifically to our continued reliance on legacy systems? Older IT systems are rich with patient information and many times they are missing needed controls and are protected with outdated technology. The real issue is that Protected Health Information is an asset and it needs to be afforded the same level of protections as other assets such as buildings and equipment. Does anyone believe that a health care organizations would buy or build a hospital without fire suppression systems? Of course they wouldn’t so, why are they still relying on virtual fire exstinguishers to address cybersecurity when they truly need a much more comprehensive set of controls for their data?

So how is VMware addressing these issues? Consider first that security is not a one size fits all problem and VMware strives to understand our customers operating environment and how data is being used and delivered across your enterprise. Armed with that knowledge we look to build a platform for security by ensuring the protection and proper access of your key assets, your data. Across our portfolio we have many solutions which allow us to demonstrate layered security controls to protect our customers and partners digital assets which includes NSX for microsgemtation, vRealize for configuration and compliance management, AirWatch for mobility management, Horizon for virtual desktop and Identity Manager for application provisioning and conditional acess controls.

One way to layer security over your critical assests is to implement a Zero Trust architecture. With the VMware NSX platform, a Zero Trust architecture is built as a baseline through microsegmenation. This concept was first proposed by Forrester Research and is intended to address security by promoting, “never trust, always verify,” as its guiding principle. With Zero Trust there is no default access or entitlements for any entity which includes users, devices, applications and network traffic regardless of the location, whether on or off the corporate network. By establishing Zero Trust boundaries, you can effectively microsegment your network allowing enhanced protection of your critical data from unauthorized applications or users, reducing your exposure to vulnerable systems, and preventing the lateral movement of malicious software across your network.

There is no single solution to this problem, it takes true focus to move past just ensuring compliance to guaranteeing the efficacy of the security program to both mitigate and remediate the risks inherent to the technology being employed. In this world of digitization, compliance is not security and security does not guarantee compliance, both need to work in harmony and meet the needs of each orgainzations goals. We must remain attentive in our efforts to help our customers protect their assets and that requires everyone’s diligence. As a trusted partner we must treat security as a team sport, supporting our customers and partners needs by helping them become aware and truly understanding the increasing threat to their digital assets and implementing solutions to solving this new epidemic.

Do you have that awareness today? VMware has significantly invested in the tools and expertise to meet the changing demands security demands of the healthcare industry. VMware is ready to help you address your new security initiatives and drive greater outcomes to the delivery of patient care by allowing your greatest asset, your data, to be used in an secure, effective and efficient manner.

** Statistical Data gathered from https://ocrportal.hhs.gov/ocr/breach/breach_report.jsf *

Secure by design: a healthcare IT imperative

Healthcare IT is different.  Problems don’t just cost money. With the Internet of Things in our hospitals and clinics, lives can often be at stake.  Designing a secure healthcare IT environment is critical not only to the business, but more importantly to the real end-user, the patient.    Security, in many Healthcare environments, frequently not considered as a part of the design process.  In order to properly design secure Healthcare IT solutions, it is imperative to consider Lifecycle Management of the application, Traffic Management between applications, and Configuration Management of the systems that support the application.

Lifecycle Management

While not always considered to be part of security, the lifecycle of an application, with its underlying Virtual Machines (VM), plays a critical role in security.  Consider a VM built for a specific application.  It is fairly simple to provision a VM from a template.  But then there is storage, networking, security software, application software, etc.  Even if everything is done correctly, and each team follows the procedure, one minor variation can have far reaching changes.

Once there, it is tough to completely remove.  In many environments, a VM might be decommissioned at the end of it’s lifecycle, but often times DNS, IP address management, firewall rules and many other systems are not cleaned up.  Many times the application may be upgraded, archived, or decommissioned, but VMs which are no longer necessary will continue to live on.  While this is inefficient, this also makes for more targets since these can fall out of monitoring systems, or can remain unpatched.

Building environments, the same way every time, removing the element of human error, and ensuring they are managed and retired or archived as appropriate provides for faster troubleshooting and a greater security since the systems are all treated similarly based on their security classification.

securebydesign1

 

Traffic Management

As I have talked about previously, traffic management becomes far more important in a virtual environment.  This is particularly important in highly regulated environments such as Healthcare.  When applications contain HIPAA or other critical data that must be secured, controls must be put in place to ensure proper traffic management.

Consider a traditional three-tiered application with web, application, and database tiers.  Ideally, in a secure environment, traffic should be inspected when traversing between each tier.  In our example below, notice that we are also using separate subnets with full layer 3 routers between them.  By doing this in software, we are able to simplify the rules as we discussed in Lifecycle Management. Policies are applied to the VMs at time of creation. Firewall rules exist in the form of a policy. Routing decisions are made locally, firewall rules are applied locally, and traffic never need leave the software environment unless it requires access to physical plant.

securebydesign2

 

Configuration Management

The importance of designing a secure system cannot be overstated.  Equally important to a secure environment is continuous monitoring of security.  Changes happen, whether a human or machine is the cause, configuration drift is a reality in every healthcare environment.  Time after time, audit reports show that a lack of configuration and patch management is the cause of numerous security breaches.

In the example below, configuration management extends to multiple types of environments.  While we often think of HIPAA in our regulated environments, there are often PCI or other areas which need validated, and all to often some of these can overlap.  Good Configuration Management means being able to show auditors a complete report on what the environment has looked like over time in addition to its current state.  This type of on demand reporting and remediation prevents the loss of patient data, while securing the environment and ensuring lifecycle management policies are enforced.

securebydesign3

 

Healthcare IT security should not be the security group setting policies in a vacuum.  Everyone in the healthcare organization is responsible for security.  It is the responsibility for Healthcare IT to provide a framework and manage appropriately so that security is a part of lifecycle, something which extends beyond just firewalls and VLANs.  Constant monitoring and remediation prevents malicious or accidental breaches, and provides the patients and providers alike a secure experience without impacting performance.

 

See you at eHI Live in Birmingham

VMware will once again be sponsoring the UK’s largest digital health show in Birmingham on November 3rd and 4th. We’ll be in booth F50.

This year we will be showcasing how VMware Healthcare solutions are mobilizing providers and patients saving an incredible 10 minutes every hour as providers access patient charts, and helping drive patient engagement and satisfaction.

We will have technical experts on hand from VMware, Airwatch and our partner Innov8 to explain how VMware solutions are helping:

  • Yorkshire and Humber Commissioning Support increase GP productivity and enhances patient across 80 GP practices through access to patient information on any device, anywhere
  • Stockport NHS Foundation Trust transform the emergency department with mobile devices improving the detail and accuracy of patient information, transferring clinical notes to the patients GP immediately on discharge, and saving 38,000 pounds in printing costs to boot.
  • Nottinghamshire Health Informatics Service simplify the 60 logins a day for each clinician and enable NHS Smartcard access to medical information, applications and NHS Spine from any workstation or mobile device.

If you’re on a tight schedule and want to make sure someone will be available when you need them, reach out to me on Twitter @james_mi and we’ll setup a time.

Securing the Healthcare Desktop

In today’s modern healthcare environment, delivering a secure and user friendly computing experience is critical to our adoption of technology.  With growing concerns over security breaches, new demands from providers for better and faster technology, and patients looking for a more personal yet consumer like experience, healthcare technology is under extreme pressure like never before.  Applications need to be delivered to many types of devices, data must be secured, all while providing a seamless and superior experience.

The state of the Healthcare Desktop

The healthcare desktop has not undergone significant changes for a number of years.  We continue to upgrade the operating systems, the applications, add new features, but the delivery not kept up with threats.  We have moved the desktop or application and its data inside the datacenter where it is secure, but that only goes so far.  We are seeing increased mergers and acquisitions in healthcare which often brings together disparate systems.  In many locations, doctors are becoming contractors, or employees of larger health care systems.  We are even seeing a surge in software development at some of the larger healthcare systems, some customer facing.

Bringing the data into the datacenter, some of the liability was removed.  With no data on the device, the provider was able to move from system to system, with a similar, and more secure experience.

Horizon1

Unfortunately, this uncovers another flaw.  With the traditional model of datacenter security, we secure the perimeter, as on the left, but once inside security is often far more relaxed.  To resolve this, a micro segmentation such as on the right side can be deployed.  For most environments though, doing this in hardware is to costly to deploy and maintain.  Firewalls everywhere requires managing in many places, and updating policies in many places.

MicroSegmentation2

Security built in not bolted on

 

In order to give a healthcare provider, the security they need, and to do so at the scale required, we need to look at a combination of the two models.  We need to bring the data in the datacenter, protect the physicians and give them an experience they are going to be excited to use, make it better not just more secure.  We also need to secure the traffic once it is brought inside the datacenter.  Not a new concept, just applying datacenter micro segmentation to the virtual desktop.

HorizonMicrosegmentation3

In reviewing the design, nothing is being removed from a traditional VDI design, physical networking components are still present.  The change comes is the green network icons represent software routers and firewalls which enable us to simplify the design.  Notice multiple layer 3 domains, not just VLAN’s, but full L3 domains enabling us to completely isolate traffic.  The firewalls encapsulate each virtual machine, not simply an operating system firewall, wrapping the virtual machine in a container and allow inspection and security at the actual VM level.

These two components are particularly important to the design because they enable us to create micro segmentation for our virtual desktop environment.  Designing this at scale requires that we use security policies to prevent thousands of firewall rules.  Policies enable the security profile to live with the VM through it’s lifecycle no matter what physical host it may be on.  Now if a user is able to compromise our virtual desktop system, they are stuck behind a firewall.  Even if they are able to get through the operating system firewall, they are still trapped behind the internal firewall.

From a healthcare perspective, we are able to do this all without impacting performance since the firewall is a part of the Virtual Machine itself.  If a healthcare provider needs access to something, policies can be changed in real time, and done at group or individual level with extreme granularity as needed.  This enables healthcare IT to not only provide a secure system, but one that is not slowed and can be adapted as needs change.

 

Security in healthcare continues to be one of the most important topics of our time.  With more sophisticated threats, and a greater demand for a consumer like experience, healthcare IT must find ways to give both with minimal compromises.  By leveraging virtual infrastructure both on the network and desktop virtualization side, we can give our providers what they need while still protecting healthcare consumers and giving them the peace of mind they need.

Healthcare Desktops in the Cloud

Desktop virtualization is a potentially exciting topic, but one which requires careful planning and resource allocation.  For many healthcare companies, the flexibility and control provided by this technology frees up resources to innovate and focus on customers.  In a traditional desktop virtualization environment, this is simply shifting IT resources to support this new paradigm.  For many use cases, this support could be offloaded as the workloads are migrated to VMware’s Horizon Air.

Why Virtual Desktops?

From a security perspective, moving the data from the user’s laptop into the datacenter on a virtual desktop makes sense.  Once we bring that data into a more secure perimeter and then simply enable the end user to manage that data from a remote location, much of the risk is eliminated.

From an ease of use perspective, a Virtual Desktop opens more opportunities.  My primary desktop is a Windows 7 corporate image on VMware’s Horizon View.  I might access that from my VMware issued laptop, my iPad, a shared computer in a partner office, or even my phone, depending on the circumstances.  For me mobile is not just a concept, mobile is a way of life.  For VMware’s IT department, a Virtual Desktop is more secure and efficient because most of the endpoint devices are not VMware assets.

What about HIPAA?

In healthcare we are always highly aware of regulations.  Think about the last time you walked into your doctor’s office.  They likely requested you sign a HIPAA notification that describes your right to notice of disclosures of your information.  This is designed to protect you, the customer.  What happens when medical providers give up control of protected data?

The HIPAA and HITECH Acts provided for a Business Associate Agreement, BAA, to protect healthcare providers when working with a Business Associate such as VMware.  In 2013, new rules require that even if the Business Associate does not ever access the Protected Health Information, PHI, a BAA must be in place.  These enable healthcare providers to move forward with moving workloads off premise without the concern of taking the liability themselves.

Why the VMware Cloud?

There are several use cases for moving workloads to VMware’s Horizon Air.

  • Rural hospitals with limited IT capacity that would like the flexibility of anywhere access
  • Health networks pooling resources to meet Meaningful Use goals
  • Rapid desktop scaling to support Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Business Continuity for clinical desktops to minimize downtime

Notice these are not all primary use cases, but rather complimentary.  They enable internal IT teams to focus on what is in front of them.  Horizon Air can also run primary workloads; these are simply a few of the potential examples.  By using the VMware Horizon cloud, the end user can enjoy the seamless experience they are experienced with in Horizon View currently.  The administrator can manage them similarly with less decisions required, and scale as needed for both capacity and performance.

As VMware continues to drive innovation in Healthcare environments, there is a greater focus on moving to a more hybrid environment.  Understanding which workloads run best internally, and which run best in VMware Horizon Air, will allow IT teams to leverage the best technology for the task at hand.

Summer Reading

I’m sure many of you are looking forward to some vacation, and what summer vacation would be complete without a good book?

I have just the book: an action packed thriller about hackers that gain access to corporate data centers, stealing secrets and customer information, leaving a trail of fines, cleanup costs, and tattered brand equity in their wake. One company didn’t even know they were hacked, but I don’t want to spoil the ending.

You can download a copy of the book here

Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Healthcare Sessions at VMworld US 2015

Last year, before VMworld U.S. 2014, I wrote down a stretch goal for myself to submit a session for VMworld U.S. 2015.  I have never enjoyed being the center of attention, and public speaking is a skill I am developing.  Imagine my surprise when my session was accepted!  I am very honored; going though the process and knowing some of the exceptional sessions that were submitted set an incredibly high bar.  It is going to be motivating to speak with you, show you what we are working on at VMware healthcare, and get feedback on what it means in your environments.

With VMworld U.S. 2015 just around the corner, there are a number of exciting things happening for Healthcare.  Within the past year, the VMware Healthcare team has continued to experience tremendous growth because of our amazing leaders, a highly motivated team, and exceptional customers.  This year we are offering more healthcare specific sessions at VMworld, and we need you to vote with your feet.  Come to the sessions, let us know what you think, and help us put the focus on what you do every day.

Below is a list of the healthcare specific sessions.  Check them out; some are presented by your peers, some by the VMware Healthcare team, and some by our partners.  The greatest compliment you can give a speaker is to ask questions during and after the presentation, and to come introduce yourself before or after.  The best part about VMworld is meeting people who are doing amazing things with the products, and have new ideas, and can share their successes and challenges.  I will be presenting about Virtual Desktop Security, session EUC4847.  Hope to see you there.