Forensic medicine institute deploys asset management tool

Regulations demand operational efficiency

To ensure compliance with international laboratory standards, the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine (VIFM) has deployed a cross-platform asset management solution.

The institute chose asset management tool Centennial Discovery to track usage, configuration data and the location of its hardware and software to ensure compliance with laboratory standards ISO 15189 and ISO 17025.

The standards, developed by the Therapeutic Goods Administration and the National Association of Testing Authorities, require accredited businesses to audit and report operational efficiency every two years.

VIFM informatics manager Vicky Winship said accreditation with the standards required a solution that would work across multiple operating systems.

"A key consideration for us when we looked for an IT asset management solution was that we needed to monitor the entire network which includes quite a lot of specialised equipment in a multi-platform IT environment with Unix, Solaris, Windows and Mac," Winship said.

The VIFM has eight staff and provides forensic pathology services and training for doctors and students, and conducts research in science and forensic medicine. Its operations are divided into four service areas including medical, forensic science, donor tissue bank, and corporate.

"In addition to enabling us to monitor and report usage of IT assets, Discovery also allows us to identify any foreign peripherals connected to the network, which was tested when a staff member innocently connected an unauthorised laptop to the network," Winship said.

The institute ran a successful three month trial prior to deployment to assess the software's auditing performance for its 150 desktops and medical devices including an ICT scanner, digital imaging equipment, and bar-coding machines.

In addition to centralized auditing of networked devices, Centennial Discovery also allows policy enforcement and identification of unused networked devices.

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