Patients Benefit from Hospital-Wide Wi-Fi, With Help from LAN3

Weston General Hospital’s Chief Executive, James Rimmer, describes the hospital he manages as a “small, friendly, patient focused NHS Trust offering a range of excellent clinical services”.

Despite being the smallest acute hospital in England, Weston General Hospital still serves a local population of 212,000 as well as the 3.3 million day-trippers who visit the North Somerset area annually, including the popular seaside town of Weston-Super-Mare.

With an aging controller-based wireless solution, that was negatively impacting the hospital’s guest and patient experience, Weston General Hospital turned to LAN3 and Dell EMC for help.

320
Beds
212,000
Local Population
Patient
Wi-Fi

How Weston General Hospital Introduced Patient Wi-Fi

In 2015 the then Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that all NHS buildings had to offer free guest and patient Wi-Fi.

Announcing the NHS Digital scheme, Hunt said: - "Everyone using the NHS expects it to be a world leader in digital healthcare and free Wi-Fi is an essential part of making that a reality. It will give patients and staff the ability to access the services they need as well as freeing up clinical time and reducing overall costs."

Fast-forward three years, and Weston General Hospital has become one of the first hospitals in the country to offer free patient and guest Wi-Fi across its 320-bed estate.

It means patients can use their smart phones or other devices to go online to keep in touch with friends and family or watch on-demand TV, while focusing on recovery.

Martin Cummings, IT Technical Manager, Weston Area Health NHS Trust, said:- “The previous wireless solution, installed in 2013, couldn’t scale very easily to provide us with site-wide coverage mandated by NHS Digital, and also offered an inflexible commercial and operation model to the Trust.

“LAN3 and Dell EMC put forward an Aerohive solution that both eliminated costly controllers with cloud-based distributed Wi-Fi, and a ‘plug-and-play’ approach that eased the management burden.”

“The nature of a hospital means we attract large numbers of both patients and visitors every day, many of which want to be able to connect to the wireless for different reasons. This leads to enormous demand placed on it.”

“Add the move towards Electronic Patient Records from clinicians, and the best thing I can say about the Aerohive wireless designed and installed by LAN3, is that it simply works without complaint."

Martin Cummings

Weston Area Health

How LAN3's Solution Helped

Cummings continued: - “The Hospital needs to serve both corporate and guest Wi-Fi at the same time, via the same solution. Being able to segregate both types of traffic is crucial.”

“The nature of a hospital means we attract large numbers of both patients and visitors every day, many of which want to be able to connect to the wireless for different reasons. This leads to enormous demand placed on it.”

“Add the move towards Electronic Patient Records from clinicians, and the best thing I can say about the Aerohive wireless designed and installed by LAN3, is that it simply works without complaint."

“Wi-Fi is at its best when it behaves like a utility such as water or electricity – it’s simply there when you need it, reliably.”