Storage resellers targeting the health sector will be able to sell their products using a shared storage model to help NHS trusts evaluate their storage needs for medical images.
The shared storage model, developed by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), will be used as an evaluation tool by the health service to represent storage technology behind the Picture Archiving and Communications System (Pacs).
The model, which creates a common vocabulary for vendors to explain how their products fit into IT architectures, has received the stamp of approval from independent body the Picture Archiving and Communications Systems Evaluation Team (PACSnet).
The government is committed to implementing Pacs in 186 NHS trusts by 2006 with the aim of using digital technology to give round-the-clock access to medical images such as X-rays and scans.
Towards the end of the month PACSnet will include the shared storage model in its report on suitable technology for implementing Pacs, which on average must store one terabyte of data each year.
Resellers of storage networking components will be able to present their technology in the shared storage model within a tender document for the purchase of Pacs.
Dewinder Bhachu, head of PACSnet, said in a statement: "The independent information provided by PACSnet assists IT professionals within NHS Trusts with the purchasing, implementation and efficient use of their Pacs.
"Storage provides the foundation for any Pacs and it is therefore a vital component."
Michael Grosbost, chairman of the SNIA Europe executive committee, said in a statement that the shared storage model is "becoming more and more widely adopted by the end user community as a useful reference model".
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