Patients go wireless at Dunedin Hospital

Doctors at Dunedin Hospital have been given wireless access to patient records. Last week the hospital put the finishing touches on a Wi-Fi (802.11b)-based system, using Cisco Aironet wireless base stations and Toshiba notebooks.

Doctors at Dunedin Hospital have been given wireless access to patient records. Last week the hospital put the finishing touches on a Wi-Fi (802.11b)-based system, using Cisco Aironet wireless base stations and Toshiba notebooks.

The system will be available for use by anyone who has a patient load, says Dr Brendon Rae. “It’s being rolled out across the organisation.”

Rae headed a trial of the wireless system earlier this year and says the trial showed significant time savings were achieved.

The trial involved registrars and house surgeons downloading lab and x-ray results to the notebooks via wireless links to on-site servers and the doctors were able to access and update patient records remotely.

There are now 13 notebooks and five wireless base stations spread over three floors, hospital technical leader Mark Black says.

The wireless system is an extension of patient management software from Auckland-based provider i-Health, which already runs on the hospital’s desktop PCs.

Peter Marsh, deputy director of health informatics for the Wirral administrative region in Britain, visited the hospital after speaking at a health informatics conference in Auckland, Rae says.

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