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Wireless sensor network helps NHS hospital monitor pharmacy compliance

Adaptive Wireless Solutions : 25 February, 2008  (New Product)
Adaptive Wireless Solutions has supplied a wireless sensor network system to Facility Monitoring Systems to form part of a pharmacy monitoring compliance solution for a Central England NHS hospital.
Facility Monitoring Systems installed the wireless validated monitoring system for the pharmacy operations of an NHS provincial hospital. The wireless system monitors ambient temperature and refrigerator temperatures in production, packing and storage areas. The wireless system is deployed in two physically dispersed areas.

The pharmacy had a problem in that an important storage building was in a remote location over 350m away on the other side of the hospital site. In addition the main hospital buildings rise up on a hill in between the two locations making any ‘line of sight’ wireless solution impossible to implement. Due to cost and ongoing hospital improvement works a wired system was not an option. In this application a multi-hop wireless solution was the only viable solution.

By mounting mesh repeater nodes in weatherproof housings on the apex of two intervening buildings the remote store temperature data is relayed back to the main Pharmacy system. The class-leading FMS software provides fully compliant and easy-to-manage system and alarm status information.

As the demand for monitoring of critical facilities continues to increase, the use of wireless sensor networks is growing due to their ease of installation, flexibility and ability to solve challenging problems allowing customers to quickly and more economically comply with legislation and regulatory requirements.

The application specifically takes advantage of some of the key benefits of wireless mesh networks – speed of installation, flexibility in use to accommodate difficult local conditions, lower installed cost and easy expansion to accommodate future needs. In this case it was the only practical way to get the job done.

Facility Monitoring Systems finds that interest in wireless monitoring solutions in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector is increasing all the time with 20 percent of enquiries currently either specifying wireless or requesting it as an option.

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