Newcastle Upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust is now offering a managed WiFi solution to patients and visitors throughout 3 of their hospitals
The Trust has been providing patient-centred healthcare to communities in the North East of England and beyond for over 250 years. NUTH is one of the largest NHS trusts in the UK, offering a wider range of specialist services than any other. From newborn babies to the elderly and infirm, the Trusts aim is to deliver leading-edge healthcare with a personal touch.
The Trust required a safe and secure, filtered, monitored and managed WiFi internet solution to offer all patients, visitors and staff for personal use on their own devices. It was paramount that the implementation of this service had no impact on the 3 hospitals involved, the patients or the hospital Staff. This service was to be offered direct to the users by the vendor with no input financially or through any other means by the Trust. It was necessary to offer a range of payment methods, primarily vouchers, so that certain charities and special care units could purchase time and offer free use in certain wards or areas of the Trust. The facility to use credit and debit cards as payment was also necessary so that users could subscribe promptly and easily in the relevant area. All marketing material posters and tent cards were to be distributed or mounted by non Trust staff in the relevant areas throughout the hospitals.
SPARK was installed onto the Trust's central data centre, and with the use of the Trust WAN and Trust IP connectivity, public WiFi was launched over each hospitals clinical WiFi infrastructure straight to the end users. The users search for available networks, click onto the WiFi SPARK HotSpot and get taken to a welcome page which offers a number of free to use web sites prior to subscription. All internet tariffs are very competitive and the system is simple to navigate around and easy to understand.
The user has a simple experience, the choice of browsing nominated free to use sites or making a nominal subscription to access the internet safely and securely from their hospital bed or anywhere else within the Trust. The user can take a look at their email, browse the web, check out catch up TV, call family through Skype or simply talk to friends and family through Facebook just like they do at home.