Instead of using pagers, InfoLogix has provided the nurses on Mercy campuses with a mobile wireless handset solution that enables rapid transmission and receipt of critical information, as well as more efficient handling of patient care requests. After assessing Mercy's communications system, InfoLogix suggested the new system's VoIP Gateway component, which enables nurses to make internal and external calls using the handsets. The systems behind the handsets are based on IP-DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications), which delivers secure wireless mobile voice, messaging, and alert communications to nurses, even if the hospital's main system goes off-line.
InfoLogix deployed 160 wireless Ascom 9d24 MkII IP-DECT handsets on Mercy's Springfield, Missouri, campus, running on 105 base stations on the Wireless Local Area Network. InfoLogix also installed a total of 80 handsets and 40 base stations across Mercy's Independence, Kansas, hospital and Fort Scott, Kansas, campus.
"Wireless mobile systems are essential for eliminating communication barriers in a health care facility, and keeping the entire staff connected, informed, and engaged",¬¨?? stated Felix Merlino, Manager Telecommunications of Sisters of Mercy Health System. "Our new wireless IP-DECT communications system enables us to fulfill our commitment to serving patients with the highest levels of safety and care. InfoLogix provided the technical expertise, dedication, and customer service necessary to create a solution that fit our needs and budget, and helped us create a wireless communications system that will meet the demands of our hospital work flow and patient needs."
Mercy deployed the system because it wanted to upgrade from its WiFi system, which only covered crucial care units. Mercy sought an IP-DECT solution that could be integrated into its disaster recovery and nurse call systems, while also covering the entire hospital, so nurses could be reached anywhere. Lastly, the handsets had to be durable and to include functions beyond basic calling.
Mercy selected InfoLogix for the implementation due to the company's extensive experience and domain expertise in 1400 mobile health care solution deployments, and its ability to assess an individually-tailored solution. After meeting with InfoLogix to discuss the installation, and based on InfoLogix's technical expertise and services, Mercy engaged the company to develop and deploy its system. InfoLogix set to work, conducting a site survey of Mercy's campuses and identifying base station locations. Because the buildings are concrete and curved, InfoLogix installed extra base stations to provide more than adequate coverage for maximum uptime in the event of an infrastructure or power failure.
The benefits of switching to an IP-DECT communications system began to surface immediately. From the first day of go-live, nurses noticed a significant improvement in their work flow by foregoing their pagers and carrying handsets instead. Under the new system, there is no back and forth paging between nurses and doctors; doctors now call nurses directly on their handsets from any internal or external line, enabling doctors to reach them faster and more easily. Alerts from the nurse call system are routed to nurses' handsets, so they no longer have to run up to the nurses' station to get a call. Instead, they go directly to the patient in need, enabling faster care.
The system has also greatly cut back on overhead paging, which reduces noise level throughout the buildings so patients can recuperate in quiet. If the nurse can't take a call, the nurse can roll it over to another nurse or aide with the push of a button. This helps reduce distractions and allows nurses to focus on the task at hand, while still providing expedient and quality care to all patients.
"It's no secret time is of the essence in a hospital",¬¨?? stated David Gulian, President and CEO of InfoLogix. "Responding to emergencies and providing high level care is contingent upon having flexible, robust communications in place. InfoLogix has the ability to deploy solutions like these, and provide ongoing mobile managed services to help hospitals achieve the maximum benefits. Mercy's new system sets the pace for taking secure, reliable wireless mobile communications to the next level."
The Sisters of Mercy Health System operates hospitals, physician practices, outpatient clinics, health plans and related health and human services in a seven state area including Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. Its members include 19 acute care hospitals providing more than 4000 licensed beds, two heart hospitals, a managed care subsidiary (Mercy Health Plans), physician practices, outpatient care facilities, home health programmes, skilled nursing services and long-term care facilities. Services are provided by approximately 31.000 co-workers and 4600 physicians who are employed or practice at Mercy facilities. Mercy is the 9th largest Catholic health care system in the United States based on net patient service revenue. It is sponsored by Mercy Health Ministry, an entity established by the Catholic Church to oversee the healing ministry and Catholic identity of Mercy.
InfoLogix is a provider of enterprise mobility solutions for the health care and commercial industries. InfoLogix uses the industry's most advanced technologies to increase the efficiency, accuracy, and transparency of complex business and clinical processes. With 19 issued patents, InfoLogix provides mobile managed solutions, on-demand software applications, mobile infrastructure products, and strategic consulting services to over 2000 clients in North America including Kraft Foods, Merck and Company, General Electric, Kaiser Permanente, MultiCare Health System and Stanford School of Medicine. InfoLogix is a publicly-traded company.