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WellSpan Health's York Hospital Drives Enterprise-Wide Operational Efficiency Using AeroScout's Wi-Fi-Based Asset Tracking and Management Solution

9/25/09 - AeroScout announced that WellSpan Health's York Hospital has deployed AeroScout's Wi-Fi-based healthcare visibility solution. York Hospital's emergency, biomedical engineering and transportation departments are using the AeroScout solution to track critical medical equipment throughout the facility to ensure that staff can quickly locate required items. The solution and its time-saving benefits are proving to be especially valuable in the emergency department during peak hours by helping to increase efficiency while improving patient satisfaction, care and safety.

York Hospital is a 580-bed, 1.2 million square-foot community teaching hospital that employs more than 3,400 people. It is currently being upgraded to one of only two Level 1 Trauma centers in south-central Pennsylvania. The hospital had wanted to implement a real-time location system (RTLS) for the last five years. When the project received approval and funding last summer, York Hospital selected AeroScout's solution primarily because it is Wi-Fi-based and because a Cisco Unified Wireless Network was already in place for data and voice over IP. York Hospital implemented the solution in collaboration with CDW Healthcare, which provided product guidance, industry expertise and logistical assistance, helping WellSpan to deploy an effective, scalable solution that supports patient care demands.

"One clear advantage of the AeroScout solution is that it leverages standard Wi-Fi, which means it was easy and cost effective to deploy and manage, allowed us to get up and running quickly and allowed us to stay within our budget," said Chad Noll, manager of biomedical engineering at WellSpan.

The solution deployed at York Hospital consists of AeroScout's MobileView software and Wi-Fi Tags . The tags are attached to a range of medical items that are constantly moving throughout the facility, including gurneys, infusion pumps, feeding pumps, portable physiological monitors and circulatory assistance pumps. The hospital also tracks its Wi-Fi enabled computers-on-wheels and IP phones. These items can be tracked without tags and without additional installed software clients, a functionality that can be achieved only with AeroScout's solution. When a tracked item is needed, staff can immediately locate it with MobleView's user-friendly interface via any computer on the network.

The biomedical engineering department at York Hospital is responsible not only for preventive maintenance and repair, but also for cleaning equipment. With the AeroScout solution, the biomed staff now has real-time visibility of all of its tracked assets across the entire facility and uses MobileView's searching, alerting and reporting capabilities to ensure safe, clean and properly functioning equipment. York Hospital also realized the significant advantages of AeroScout's solution in its emergency and transportation departments where finding items quickly for patient care is an important benefit for the hospital, its staff and patients.

"The AeroScout solution saves us valuable time every day and enables us to immediately find critical medical equipment, which is especially important in the case of the emergency department when it's busy and the staff is focused on treating patients," stated Noll. "We no longer have to manually search the entire facility multiple times a day to track down items. But the true testament to the power of the AeroScout solution is that the staff -- nurses, biomed staff and everyone else -- finds it easy to use and highly valuable."

AeroScout's solution also enables wireless monitoring and management of the environmental condition of assets, such as the temperature or humidity. York Hospital is starting to use AeroScout's Temperature Monitoring solution to track the temperature of refrigerators to ensure that they remain safe and meet regulatory requirements. The hospital also plans to expand this application to several offsite facilities.

"York Hospital exemplifies why the majority of hospitals prefer Wi-Fi-based solutions," said Gabi Daniely, vice president of marketing and product strategy at AeroScout. "They are demonstrating the immediate benefits that hospitals experience when cost-effectively rolling out a variety of AeroScout applications for tracking the location, condition and status of assets, across numerous hospital departments."

By Robert Hoskins

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