Citrix EMR: Electronic Medical Records over Citrix – Best Practices for Citrix EMR

Citrix EMR implementations are becoming more and more popular. Probably over half of current Citrix environments are built to vend some sort of EMR application.  There are a number of considerations to be made before deploying a Citrix EMR solution, and we’ll attempt to cover some of those in this document.

Some of the most common EMR applications you will see in the Consulting Land are:

- Allscripts
- Cerner
- Epic
- GE Centricity

Each of these Citrix EMR solutions come with their own set of considerations.  It is always best to obtain the “Citrix Best Practices” white paper directly from the manufacturer of the EMR application you intend to use before deploying it.  Most of the time a Citrix EMR software provider is going to have suggested hotfixes you’ll need to obtain from Citrix, hardware compatibility, as well as software compatibility.  It’s notable that many newer versions of Citrix software are not compatible with a Citrix EMR architecture right now.

Some primary considerations when deploying a Citrix EMR environment include:

- Hardware: Citrix EMR apps are very intensive on hardware, and you need to make sure that you have sufficient CPU and RAM to support a Citrix EMR environment.
- Provisioning: Most Citrix EMR envrionments now adays are going to rely on Citrix PVS in order to build in redundancy and allow scalability. PVS Expertise is hard to come by in the current job market, because it is in such demand — So make sure your team has appropriate PVS knowledge to build and support a provisioned environment before deploying a Citrix EMR solution.
- Hypervisor: While it is possible to provision a Citrix EMR solution to bare metal, it’s most advisable to virtualization the entire Citrix EMR environment to make it easier to manager, implement changes, and backup/restore.

CITRIX: In addition to contacting the software manufacturer of the EMR application, you should also be in direct contact with Citrix before creating a Citrix EMR environment.  Ask Citrix to provide you with any hotfixes they may have, or best practice guides from the Citrix side on how to best deploy your Citrix EMR environment.  Make sure that the version of Citrix that you plan to use is supported on the hardware you plan to roll out your Citrix EMR environment on (see below).

HARDWARE: It is in your best interest to research any hardware you might consider deploying with a Citrix EMR infrastructure.  Some hardware have known issues with Citrix, EMR apps, or the hypervisor software.  You’ll want to check the HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) with Citrix and the EMR provider before moving forward with a Citrix EMR rollout.  Example:  Cisco M1 may currently be supported on Xenserver 5.6, but it may not be on the support list for Xenserver 6.1.

By working together with both Citrix, your hardware manufacturer and the EMR provider, you should be able to eliminate major pitfalls, and have a successful Citrix EMR rollout.  For more information on specific Citrix EMR solutions, troubleshooting, tips and tricks — stay tuned to our blog for the latest.

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