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News

GGZ-NML deploys RTLS solution to ensure staff safety

Ekahau : 20 May, 2008  (Application Story)
GGZ-NML, a hospital in Venray, The Netherlands, is the first healthcare organization in that country to use Ekahau’s Real Time Location Systems (RTLS) to ensure the safety of its employees in the psychiatric care unit.
The hospital also recently demonstrated its cutting-edge Ekahau application to more than 50 other Dutch healthcare organizations, showcasing how real-time location tracking can assist in rapidly and accurately finding employees who may be in dangerous situations.

'With unpredictable psychiatric patients under our care, our staff often finds themselves in a position where their personal safety can be compromised,' said Erik Stijnen, project manager for ICT at GGZ-NML. 'As we were renovating our facility, we realised that we needed a safety application that could easily integrate with our new wireless IP infrastructure. We tested several real-time location tracking applications, but only Ekahau met our demands for accuracy and rapid positioning.'


To support GGZ-NML's staff safety requirements, systems integrator Zetacom deployed Ekahau RTLS, the only Wi-Fi-based location tracking solution that can operate over any brand or generation of Wi-Fi network. Hospital employees wear Ekahau's advanced Wi-Fi tags, which feature a panic button that can be pressed when they feel they are at risk. Through an application designed by Zetacom, the alarms are sent to Wi-Fi telephone handsets used by GGZ-NML's security department.

Once notified of an alarm, the security staff can accurately determine the exact location of that employee and track their movement in real-time, so they can quickly react to the situation. Ekahau's tags also feature two-way communications, enabling employees to acknowledge that their emergency call was received.

Unlike other RTLS systems, Ekahau tags operate simply as any other standard Wi-Fi network-connected device. As a result, Ekahau RTLS does not interfere with existing Wi-Fi connectivity, including voice telephony, data, messaging and wireless care applications that GGZ-NML is utilising.

'Ekahau's ability to deliver solutions that integrate seamlessly with any enterprise-class Wi-Fi network is the reason why 150 hospitals worldwide now rely on our products,' said Antti Korhonen, president and chief executive officer of Ekahau. 'GGZ-NML's staff safety application underscores the versatility of Ekahau RTLS in not only healthcare scenarios, but in any other profession where employees may find themselves in risky situations.'
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