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Information Technology

Overview of Information Technology at UTHealth

UTHealth Help Desk:

The Information Technology department (IT) provides support for the UTHealth by planning, developing, delivering and supporting reliable, timely, secure and cost-effective systems and services to transport, process and store information throughout the institution.

IT is the central information technology service provider for the campus.  The Medical School, School of Public Health and Harris County Psychiatric Center have IT departments which provide specialized IT services for those entities.  These IT departments have a ‘dotted line’ reporting responsibility to the Chief Information Officer (CIO) who leads IT.  The School of Health Information Sciences also has its own IT staff for special support unique to a school that teaches information technology in a health sciences setting.  The Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) has onsite IT staff and also receives support from Academic Technology. 

The needs of research can be so unique as to require dedicated technology specialists.  While not reporting to the central IT department, these support staff are still responsible for following UTHealth policy and generally accepted IT standards, policies and procedures.  As appropriate, researcher’s technology needs can be handled by Academic Technology or a school’s IT department.

View the IT 2016 Organization Chart (PDF)

Campus IT Departments

Office of the Chief Information Officer

Rick Miller, vice president and chief information officer for UTHealth, provides leadership and oversight for the Information Technology (IT) at UTHealth.  The CIO is the primary liaison to other University of Texas components, U. T. System and the State of Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR) in Austin.  The CIO represents IT on various councils, committees and task forces.

Administrative Technology

Administrative Technology implements and maintains technology solutions to assist the university with administrative tasks and includes:

  • Student information applications
  • Financial management applications
  • Human resource management applications
  • Records management applications and services

Led by Connie Wooldridge, director of administrative technology.

Administrative Support

The administrative support team works with the CIO and IT department heads to provide coordinated administrative support to the entire IT department. 

Administrative support includes:

  • Maintaining budgets and financial records
  • Procurement
  • Travel
  • Supplies
  • Processing personnel transactions
  • Maintaining departmental files
  • Coordinating activities and follow-up for the CIO

Led by Krysti Suarez, administrative service officer III.

 Academic Technology

The primary responsibility of the Office of Academic Technology is to enhance and sustain an environment within the university in which integrated, computational solutions are developed to meet educational, clinical and research requirements.

Led by Dr. Bill Weems, assistant vice president for academic technology.

Clinical Technology

The role of Clinical Technology is to:

  • Promote the use of technology in a clinical setting,
  • Coordinate campus activities in this area and
  • Provide campus-wide clinical applications.

Clinical Technology is still largely fragmented among practice plans and HCPC.  As technology supports consolidation of services into a single provider, this fragmentation will decrease.  At present, Clinical Technology is largely a collaborative effort providing central direction and services.

Led by Dr. James Griffiths, executive director of clinical technology.

Communication Technical Services

Communication Technical Services implements, maintains and operates the wide area network for the campus, provides voice services through a network of PBX’s and provides internet connectivity.  The wide area network is the transport for voice, data and video traffic for a wide variety of applications.

Led by Derek Drawhorn, executive director of communications technology. 

Data Center Operations and Support Services

The Data Center Operations group operates the university’s primary data centers at the Medical School and UCT.  The group also administers standards for other data centers on the campus.

The UCT data center is staffed 24/7 with computer operators and production schedulers.  Unix and Windows Technical Support teams provide support for servers including implementation and maintenance of operating systems and utilities.  These teams also provide standard or custom hosting services for departmental systems.

Led by Kevin Granhold, director of data center operations and support services.

Desktop Support Groups

Desktop support is coordinated through a collaboration of the Medical School IT department (MSIT), the SPH IT department and the central IT group.  These three groups together set standards and coordinate activities in behalf of customers in general administration, PBS, Medical School, SON, Dental Branch and SPH.   

Led by Bassel Choucair, director of information technology

Help Desk & Training

The Help Desk is a central call center for IT customers seeking support for their technology.  The Help Desk:

  • answers questions,
  • logs calls,
  • dispatches assistance and
  • tracks resolutions

Training provides training in campus-wide applications to end users.

Led by David Posado, manager of client support services.

Project Support Office

Provides support for IT projects across the campus.  Activities include:

  • Project management
  • Development and application of a system development methodology (SDM)
  • Project planning
  • Project budgeting
  • Project monitoring
  • Coordination of projects with IT and Procurement

Project managers are assigned projects by the CIO.

Security & Disaster Recovery Planning

The IT Security and Disaster Recovery Planning group provides:

  • Security awareness training,
  • IT security policy development,
  • Disaster recovery planning for critical services,
  • Firewall services,
  • Intrusion detection and intrusion prevention services and
  • Network and server vulnerability scanning.

IT Security does not have responsibility for application security. Application security development resides with the developers and administration of application security belongs primarily with application owners.

Led by Amar Yousif, chief information security officer.