Varay Case Study: Disaster Recovery Plan for Senior Health and Wellness Service

Planning ahead saves more than your business — it can save lives

Client description

client-descriptionOur client is a premier multi-site provider of senior health and wellness services. They provide medical and residential care, as well as independent living services and fun life enriching activities for seniors.

The challenge

Though they were running a wonderful, compliant business at the time, the client had the foresight to ask us to help them to prepare for a disaster before it ever struck.

For our client, being caught unprepared by a catastrophe could result in:

  • Loss of business continuity
  • Loss of compliance
  • Loss of funding
  • Severe penalties
  • Harm or even death of the senior clients they serve

Our solution

We worked with the client to identify the most critical elements that keep their business running and their clients’ important medical records accessible.

Here’s what we did:

  • Varay conducted a business impact analysis to identify the key systems necessary to provide the care their senior clients deserve, and to keep them running in the event of a disaster.
  • We identified their recovery time objectives and recovery point objectives so we knew which systems to focus on to maintain business continuity in a worst-case scenario.
  • We communicated the disaster recovery plan to the staff so everyone knows what to do if something terrible happens. We devised a means of housing the plan, contact information, and the agreed on method of communicating in a disaster situation using Slack and Dropbox.
  • We helped the client identify buildings that would temporarily house their staff while the disaster recovery plan went into action.
  • We refreshed some of their older hardware so it would be ready to use at a moment’s notice at minimal expense. We also set up a refreshment schedule for their daily-use hardware to head off any problems from faulty equipment or software.
  • We identified a remote data center that is distant enough to be unaffected by any local natural disasters, so their critical data and systems would be safely replicated nightly and ready to access.

The results

With a solid disaster recovery plan in place, our client is able to rest easy and continue to serve their senior clients with confidence and continuity.

confidence and continuityThey now have:

  • Peace of mind that even in a worst-case scenario their business will continue providing optimal care
  • A watertight disaster recovery plan
  • Compliance with HIPAA and their internal board’s disaster recovery plan requirements
  • Sweat-free IT security audits

Background: What you need to know

When we at Varay introduce people to disaster recovery planning, many are surprised to realize just how impactful a catastrophe can be.

We create disaster recovery plans for a variety of possible worst-case scenarios, like:

  • Natural disasters (floods, freezes, storm outages)
  • Manmade disasters (user error, fiber cuts, terrorism, malicious hacking and viruses)

A single calamity can wipe out a business for weeks, months, or even deliver a death sentence.

And I’m not being dramatic: disasters kill businesses.
If you can’t have critical systems operating within a short timeframe after a catastrophic event, odds are good you will never recover.

Disasters kill unprepared businesses

Case in point:

September 11, 2001

As the people of America helplessly watched the towers of the World Trade Center collapse into Ground Zero, we didn’t realize we were also watching the collapse of many thriving businesses that were not prepared for the sudden loss of data and hardware.

As much as we all wanted to hide away in the days following that horrible disaster, life had to go on — but for many businesses, lost records, destroyed servers, and a disorganized infrastructure meant disaster upon disaster. Here’s an interesting look at disaster recovery plan “lessons learned” from a decade after 9/11.

The damage that results from a failure to create a solid disaster recovery plan can cost more than the life of your business. It can actually put the lives of the people you serve at risk.

Even quiet IT disasters can cost lives

worst-case scenarioThat’s why this respected senior health and wellness service provider approached Varay to create a disaster recovery plan that would keep them running and able to serve their valued clients, even in a worst-case scenario.

Because when you provide medical services and rely on vital records to keep people healthy and happy, you can’t afford to lose a month, a week, or even a day of data.

If a natural or manmade catastrophe hit them unprepared, the IT disorganization that followed would impact their clients severely.

Senior lives would be on the line. Our client wasn’t OK with that kind of risk, and we gave them a secure plan to avoid it.

What’s your plan to continue business in a worst-case scenario?

Let Varay help you design a disaster recovery plan that misses nothing.

Click here for a free, non-intrusive audit and find out how well prepared you are for a disaster.

Photos courtesy of Pixabay, via Skitterphoto, Counselling, and Unsplash.