Polycom's latest VSX video systems are now being customized for health care

Pleasanton 26 September 2005Polycom Inc., a provider of unified collaborative communications solutions, has outlined specific benefits for medical and health care applications delivered by the recently announced VSX 7000s, VSX 7000e and VSX 5000 systems and VSX Release 8.0 software. The new systems are compatible with Polycom's telemedicine solutions, the MedLink Cart and the Polycom Practitioner Cart, as well as medical devices from leading vendors including AMD and RNK Products, among others, giving health care professionals the quality and performance of Polycom technology with different cost and configuration options to best suit their specific needs.

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Polycom's telemedicine solutions provide increased contact with patients at remote locations and are the only standards-based integrated conferencing and collaborative solutions that help meet HIPAA requirements. With Polycom's new enhanced solutions, practitioners will be able to deliver quality care regardless of geographic location, manage patient care, and receive continuing medical education and training in a cost-conscious health care industry.

"We have been expanding our telemedicine programme over the past five years using Polycom's solutions. After our beta-test of the VSX 5000 in the spring, we plan on revamping our entire programme replacing existing models with new systems over the next five years", stated Glenn Hammack, executive director of the University of Texas Medical Branch's (UTMB) Electronic Health Network. "Connecting with more than 250 remote locations and conducting about 60.000 videoconferencing sessions with patients annually, UTMB looks forward to increasing its offerings for a more feasible programme."

"Listening to our customers' needs has allowed us to customize our solutions to meet the specific requirements of the health care market", stated Craig Lynar, vice president of solutions marketing at Polycom. VSX Release 8.0 software introduces enhanced content-sharing capabilities for all VSX systems, enabling physicians and health care professionals to more effectively share high-resolution content such as x-rays, ultrasounds or video content during a video collaboration session.

New capabilities now available for new and existing VSX systems include:

  • VCR/DVD and Document Camera video and images are now available as "Content" during a video call, enabling a health care practitioner to see the person speaking along with the content.
  • Enhanced support for medical devices - peripherals that require transparent pass through, e.g. medical devices, are now supported in both H.320 and H.323 calls.
  • Adjustable bandwidth enables optimized image clarity - new adjustable bandwidth for people and content enables health care professionals to enhance image clarity based on their specific application, e.g. allocate more bandwidth to content for important high-resolution images.

These new options complement existing support for H.239 (People+Content) data sharing capabilities, the Visual Concert VSX pod for easily connecting a PC and sharing content in a video call, and the People+Content IP PC application that enables users, even audio participants, to share data in a video call either through a wired or wireless broadband connection.

"We recently tested our TR-1 Telephonic Stethoscope system with Polycom's new software", stated Rich Abbruscato, CEO of RNK Products Inc. "Integration was very easy and system performance was excellent, two very important issues with our users."

Polycom's award-winning VSX line now features three new systems to meet the needs of specific health care and medical applications: VSX 5000, VSX 7000s and VSX 7000e. The three new systems are compatible with Polycom's telemedicine solutions: the MedLink Cart and the Polycom Practitioner Cart. The new VSX systems all feature Polycom VSX Signature Benefits which deliver unmatched quality, performance, ease of use, and leadership options that enable organisations to customize video conferencing solutions to fit their needs.

The VSX 5000 is a breakthrough entry-level solution designed for customers demanding premium quality audio and video performance coupled with basic videoconferencing functionality that is well suited for the health care industry. The system includes a new electronic pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera featuring high reliability and functionality for patient care. The dual mode (IP/ISDN) system includes an RS-232 communication port for attaching medical devices, support for dual monitor capability, as well as advanced data sharing options for Visual Concert VSX and People+Content IP. The system can connect to an XGA or TV display. With this functionality, practitioners are able to deliver quality care regardless of geographic location, manage patient care, and receive continuing medical education and training in a cost-conscious health care industry.

The new VSX 7000s is a high quality, versatile set-top conferencing solution that delivers the industry's best video (ProMotion 60 fields) and audio quality (StereoSurround and Siren14) with a robust set of collaboration options to meet a variety of medical and health care requirements. The VSX 7000s includes an embedded speaker and subwoofer, providing superior audio performance. The system provides incredibly natural imaging using the latest in video technology and standards, includes an RS-232 communication port for attaching medical devices, has embedded dual monitor support, and multiple methods of sharing data, videos and pictures with all conference participants. The system can also be connected to either an XGA or TV display when in single-monitor mode.

The new VSX 7000e is a top-of-the-line, mainstream group video conferencing system with a split form factor ideal for flat panel displays. The VSX 7000e ships with a slim, attractive codec and a detached Polycom PowerCam camera. The VSX 7000e includes the same high quality audio and video as the VSX 7000s, and includes dual RS-232 connectors for attaching medical and control devices, dual monitor support, and can be connected to either an XGA or TV display when in single-monitor mode. The system also features advanced connection options such as direct international POTS, for easily adding a voice-only participant.

The new system complements the existing Polycom VSX products, offering medical and health care professionals a comprehensive set of solutions to meet specific needs. Existing systems include the VSX 3000 all-in-one desktop system with built-in display for physician and health care professional offices, the V500 video calling appliance for small rooms, and the VSX 8000 rack-mountable system designed to meet the needs of system integrators and integrated room environments.

The Polycom VSX 5000, VSX 7000s and VSX 7000e systems are now available through Polycom channel partners starting at US $3999, $6999 and $8999, respectively. VSX Release 8.0 software is now available for customers with maintenance contracts for US $1999.

Polycom Inc. specializes in unified collaborative communications (UCC) that maximize the efficiency and productivity of people and organisations by integrating the broadest array of video, voice, data and Web solutions to deliver the ultimate communications experience. Polycom's high quality, standards-based conferencing and collaboration solutions are easy to deploy and manage, as well as intuitive to use.

Supported by an open architecture, they integrate seamlessly with leading telephony and presence-based networks. With its market driving technologies, best-in-class products, alliance partnerships, and world-class service, Polycom is the smart choice for organisations seeking proven solutions and a competitive advantage in real-time communications and collaboration. More Polycom news is available in the VMW July 2005 article Polycom demonstrates diabetes telehealth care programme in Delta Diabetes Project.


Leslie Versweyveld

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