In the high-stakes environment of healthcare, reliable and secure internet connectivity is not just a convenience—it’s a life-or-death necessity. For hospitals, possessing enough IPv4 addresses is crucial to maintaining this vital connectivity. Today that means purchasing IPv4 addresses on the market.

The Need for IPv4 Addresses in Healthcare

Hospitals increasingly rely on digital technologies to provide top-tier medical care. From managing Electronic Health Records (EHRs) to supporting telemedicine, each function depends on a robust network powered by sufficient IPv4 addresses. The finite nature of these addresses and the slow migration to IPv6 make purchasing additional IPv4 addresses a strategic priority for healthcare institutions.

Why Hospitals Should Buy IPv4 Addresses

  • Expansion of Services

As hospitals expand services like telemedicine or remote patient monitoring, they require more IP addresses to handle increased traffic and new devices. Both these services are growing and no hospital wants their path blocked due to lack of IPv4 addresses.

  • Network Reliability and Speed

A sufficient supply of IP addresses can reduce network congestion, enhance speed, and improve the overall reliability of hospital internet services. As more patient interactions occur digitally through portals, the ability to easily change ISPs to maintain or enhance reliability is provided by the hospital owning it’s own IPv4 addresses. Hospital reliance on ISP’s IPv4 addresses means that a time-consuming renumbering must take place when changing ISPs, essentially locking the ISP  in place.

  • Regulatory Compliance

With stringent regulations such as HIPAA in the US, hospitals must ensure that their networks are secure and compliant. Proper IP management plays a critical role in achieving these standards. If the hospital is not using dedicated, hospital-owned addresses, various attack vectors are opened and achieving the required security is much more difficult.

Benefits of Purchasing IP Addresses

Investing in IPv4 addresses offers several benefits:

  • Scalability

As healthcare technology evolves, having a surplus of IP addresses allows hospitals to scale their operations without network constraints. The internet provides the opportunity to scale hospital services, but IPv4 address deficiencies can prevent the realizing of that opportunity.

  • Enhanced Security

Dedicated IP addresses can help segment networks, reducing vulnerability to cyber-attacks and enhancing patient data protection. It’s much easier to configure a secure environment behind static IPv4 addresses that are hospital-owned.

  • Operational Continuity

With adequate IP addresses, hospitals can avoid disruptions in critical services, ensuring that medical staff have uninterrupted access to the tools they need. For hospitals to run multi-homed BGP or connectivity from multiple ISPs for redundancy, hospital ownership of an IPv4 range is required.

  • Future-proofing the Network

By securing IPv4 addresses now, hospitals can avoid the rush and high prices when addresses become even scarcer. Nobody knows the future of IPv4, but everybody knows that the number of addresses is limited. Because of the importance of hospital services, the value of  hospital-owned IPv4 addresses is higher than for most institutions, and the reduction of uncertainty in the provision of hospital services justifies investment in IPv4 to future-proof the network.

A Cautionary Tale

IPTrading was called upon to negotiate the sale of an ISP-owned IPv4 address block to a hospital. Unfortunately, the hospital had used these addresses, which it did not own, in an application that had been disseminated throughout the internet. That application had the ISP-owned IPv4 addresses hardcoded into it, and the original programmers could not be found. Due to the importance of this app, the hospital had to pay an extraordinarily high price for these addresses, because the small block was preventing the sale of a much larger block at a much higher per-address price. Hospitals who use IPv4 addresses in applications or to number hardware must ensure that they own and control those addresses, or they could be in serious and expensive trouble.

The Role of IP Brokers in IPv4 Acquisitions

IP brokers such as IPTrading are invaluable in navigating the complex market of IP address acquisition. We specialize in:

  • Assessing Needs: Determining the precise number of IPv4 addresses your hospital will need based on current and projected usage.
  • Facilitating Transactions: Ensuring that the purchase of IPv4 addresses is transparent, legally compliant, and aligns with regional regulations.
  • Providing Support: Offering ongoing support to manage and optimize IP address usage as hospital needs evolve.

For hospitals, the decision to purchase additional IPv4 addresses should be viewed as an investment in their future operational integrity and in the quality of care they can provide. With the guidance of experienced IP brokers like IPTrading, hospitals can secure the resources they need to support critical healthcare services now and into the future.

By understanding the importance of purchasing IPv4 addresses, hospitals can enhance their technological capabilities and secure their operations against future challenges. IPTrading is here to assist every step of the way, ensuring that your healthcare facility remains at the forefront of medical technology and patient care.

FAQ Section

Q: How does the purchase of IPv4 addresses impact hospital operations?

A: Buying additional IPv4 addresses ensures that hospitals can accommodate more devices and services without network strain, which is critical for operational efficiency and patient care.

Q: Can hospitals wait for IPv6 adoption instead of buying more IPv4 addresses?

A: While the adoption of IPv6 is inevitable, the current global infrastructure still relies heavily on IPv4. Hospitals need to manage immediate needs with IPv4 to ensure seamless connectivity and service delivery.