Financially speaking, what would every lost minute of downtime be worth to a hospital? Billing would come to a halt and insurance and Medicare & Medicaid claims would be left unprocessed. Incoming patient information would be highly delayed, if not lost or forgotten. Employees would be unable to schedule surgeries or transmit x-ray files and MRI scans. Doctors would be unable to access medical histories and prescriptions. What is the level of financial impact this hypothetical event has on this business? It’s possibly devastating.
Not only would normal business operations be compromised, but patients couldn't have surgery and healthcare personnel couldn't do their job. Does this hospital’s mission hinge upon the data center functioning correctly?
Just like this hospital data center, mission critical properly refers to processes and technology where failure produces catastrophic consequences. These consequences could include great personal injury, death, crippling facility damage, or severe financial costs that jeopardize the survival of that organization. If the hospital experiences major downtime, that event would extensively hinder the hospital's business efforts, not to mention deny critical and sometimes lifesaving services to people in need. That brings up a whole new category of problems for the General Counsel.
Consider this: many organizations are dependent on others for their own services and on creating a stable business environment.
In our example, the hospital supports other health-related businesses within its region. Experiencing a loss of services could have a ripple effect, thus widening the economic impact of the event.
Most companies understand the importance of their core business and its key components, but many are left unprepared for disasters and need to plan for recovery. Ready.gov is an excellent place to become informed and make a plan for protecting your business.