As the world faces the onslaught of the COVID-19 virus and its effects on society, the availability of certain websites and applications takes on a new level of significance. People need access to reliable information regarding the spread of the disease, how to check for symptoms, and measures being put in place to safeguard the health of the population. The Internet and its resources provide a potential weapon to combat the virus that was not available during the 1918 pandemic. At this point, we need to make use of every advantage available to us.
There is no denying that our healthcare professionals are our most important assets in the fight against this unprecedented world pandemic. They too rely on computer systems and database applications for information as they attempt to navigate the uncertain landscape unfolding before them. This reliance shines a light on the IT professionals and database teams that are responsible for keeping the systems running and maintaining a high degree of performance. Their jobs are more important now than perhaps ever before.
Websites and Applications that Address Our Situation
Here is an abridged list of websites and applications that are currently being used to disseminate vitally important health-related information to concerned citizens and healthcare professionals around the country and the world. The availability of these systems in themselves will not solve the problem of the Coronavirus, but their absence poses the risk of making things worse.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) is comprised of more than 7,000 people in over 150 countries. It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland and was created on April 7, 1948. It is the directing and coordinating authority on international health within the United Nations system and adheres to the UN’s values.
- The Center for Disease Control and Protection (CDC) is the closest thing that the United States has to the WHO. It provides vitally important information on identifying COVID-19 symptoms and offers methods of providing home care for affected persons and tips on disinfecting your home.
- The United States’ American Medical Association is another comprehensive source of health-related information that is offering support for the medical community as they struggle to obtain the resources they need to battle the pandemic. They are currently calling for ideas that can be used throughout the healthcare community to address the shortages in personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Organizations such as EBSCO Health provide global healthcare practitioners with evidence-based resources with which they can make more informed clinical decisions. These resources are vital to the healthcare community’s ability to effectively respond to the emergency.
This is just a small sampling of healthcare-focused websites that rely on database applications to get information to those that need it. Many more are being used every day by doctors, nurses, EMT workers, and hospital staff to perform their jobs.
Unseen by the general public are the thousands of internal systems implemented in hospitals and healthcare facilities around the world. These are instrumental in allowing staff members to provide effective care to their patients and are often used to share information throughout a hospital system. Failure of any of these database-powered systems impacts the health and safety of countless individuals who rely on medical technology.
Keeping an Eye on Critical Database Applications
Monitoring databases and their associated applications are one of the best ways to ensure they are available to the users who depend on them. It is a best practice that should be followed with any important database that is even more relevant when considering healthcare systems directed toward fighting the virus.
IDERA’s SQL Diagnostic Manager for SQL Server offers organizations a reliable tool with which they can monitor their critical SQL Server database applications. It can help database teams make sure that their systems are available and performing efficiently when stressed by high usage rates. The application enables continuous monitoring of physical, virtual, and cloud instances of SQL Server. DBAs can manage and monitor jobs with the ability to start and stop jobs as needed. Alerts can be set for contention and performance issues related to tempdb with customized counters to provide the specific information you need about your systems.
The capabilities of SQL Diagnostic Manager for SQL Server let you fine-tune the types of alerts that are generated and control who receives them. Messages can be sent to different groups based on metrics, instances or other parameters chosen by the database team. The tool comes with over 100 predefined alert settings based on industry best practices that can be customized for the needs of any SQL Server environment. Maintenance mode allows you to disable monitoring when necessary to eliminate false alerts that can distract the support team. Viewing the locks, blocks, and deadlocks impacting your systems and drill-down to identify the real cause of performance problems.
Healthcare systems are unique in their importance to society. But there are many other databases and applications whose lack of availability and performance can have severe consequences. Make sure you are monitoring your databases and taking the proper action to ward off problems before they become critical. Proactive measures are always more effective than reacting once issues occur.