03-Apr-2018

Enhance hospital asset and people protection through digital transformation

Hospitals, over the past several years, have experienced an increase in the number of violent acts against staff, caregivers and patients, as well as asset theft, destruction, and intrusion into protected zones. What makes it more difficult to protect hospitals is that they are open to the public, exposing them to potential gun violence and even baby kidnapping. This is in addition to the wards or care units that are already prone to violence such as the emergency or psychiatric wards.

In addition to the financial costs linked to violence (such as days away from work, patient’s or workers' compensation), the impact on a hospital’s image is huge while social media amplifies public awareness.

Although malicious acts are less common than violent acts (13 percent vs. 87 percent for violent acts in France , according to ONVS - Observatoire National des Violences en milieu de Santé), they constitute additional key factors that might negatively impact the security and operations. Security solutions to mitigate threats are also essential to simplifying day-to-day maintenance and surveillance, making your hospital smart, providing the best environment to maximize patient outcomes and delivering a better and safer place to work for caregivers. This would include building management sensors such as temperature / humidity sensors or smart sensors.

Lastly, the number of attacks have been increasing because of current unstable social and geopolitical environments. A hospital must be prepared to manage either an attack on the hospital or a mass-casualty incident. Crisis conferencing and collaboration tools are there to help coordinate efforts and ensure contacting the right skilled people.

These security and safety topics have led to the creation of professional associations and governmental guidance, laws and regulations such as the evolution of the Occupational Safety and Health Act in the United States of America. Such regulations require, for instance, systems  that enable calling an emergency number from an emergency button or by dialing a phone (911/112).

It has become critical that security teams evolve from just fire security to covering a larger safety spectrum. Staff and caregivers should also become key players in safety and must be trained on how to react and anticipate risks by sharing knowledge and experience thanks to collaboration tools.

Healthcare - Medical Staff

IT technologies will play an important role in the digital transformation from a security and safety perspective. Different solutions can be identified:
- IoT devices - like biometric wearables, smart sensors and video-surveillance - connected to a notification server
- Location-based services enabling wayfinding, geofencing, as well as people and asset tracking
- Analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) that can be embedded within the connected objects (such as a video surveillance camera recognizing rapid movement) or as complementary cloud-services.

The digital transformation enabling technologies require strong and reliable machines to connect people and objects as well as manage their triggers. When facing risks or violent acts, optimizing analysis and decision-making with operational teams is vital for hospitals, making it possible to widely inform people through multi-modal messages or connected objects such as wallboards.

ALE offers such solutions in hybrid mode, complementing on-premises systems with cloud services. Alcatel-Lucent Rainbow™ Communication Platform as a Service (CPaaS) – a part of this hybrid offer that mixes on-premises and cloud services – is the relationship machine that enables the connection of applications, people and objects. The openness of its APIs allows for co-development of business applications with a wide ecosystem of partners, whether in people and asset protection or pure healthcare.

Learn more about ALE solutions for Healthcare.

View the webinar on demand: How To Protect People And Assets In Hospitals

Tags - Healthcare

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About the author
Jacques Der-Ohanian

Jacques Der Ohanian

Director, Head of Communications Vertical Solutions at ALE

Jacques is senior Director, Head of Communications Vertical Solutions at ALE. He is responsible for creating digital solutions to address needs in Education, Government, Healthcare and Hospitality as well as content creation to support sales. Jacques is a graduate of Telecom ParisTech, France.

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