Hospital Group Improves Security and Optimizes Operations with Network Video

In almost every hospital around the world, many people enter and exit every day, which creates enormous operational challenges for the people and buildings involved. The managers that run these spaces are aware of this, and as a result, are integrating more and more new technological solutions that enable them to take better care of their areas of responsibility.

This is the case at Alfredo G. Paulson Women’s Hospital, part of the complex Alejandro Mann medical center in the Honorable Junta de Beneficencia de Guayaquil (Honorable Guayaquil Welfare Board) in Ecuador. This medical center also includes the Roberto Gilbert Children’s Hospital.

The Women’s Hospital has a five-story and a two-story building, the latter being the outpatient center. To protect against possible security and safety risks in each of these buildings, the board installed a complete network video surveillance system.

The Honorable Welfare Board already had a similar hospital constructed in the 50s, the Enrique Sotomayor Maternity Unit, whose infrastructure did not meet the operational demands, given that it depended on an analog closed-circuit television system (CCTV) that was very limited. At that time, the hospital had problems with medical supply theft and patient complaints that could not be checked, etc. – Mauro Avecilla, automation and inspection engineer for MELACORP, the company leading the hospital’s video system installation

MELACORP helped the board find an ideal system to complete the transition from a mid-century building to a modern one that responds to its operational needs, as well as to those of the hospital’s security and its patients. At the beginning of the project, the objective was to integrate monitoring into all the other buildings that belong to the organization, for boosting security and optimizing hospital operations. This started with a pilot to incorporate the previous CCTV components in the Roberto Gilbert Hospital with a Milestone XProtect network video software platform, relieving them of their inefficient system of multiple NVRs and DVRs.

Given the modernization challenge, MELACORP proposed Milestone XProtect Expert video management software as the unifying surveillance system, and a series of network cameras from Axis Communications.

One of the reasons we chose this solution was based on the topic of video analytics, which nowadays isn’t one that is enjoyed by technicians or engineers among different systems. Our goal was for the video to become a true source of support in operational procedures. The Welfare Board can now count on the analytics of a missing object, located object and cases in which those lines cross, among other options. – Mauro Avecilla

In the main building, 230 cameras were installed, and 34 more were placed in the supplementary outpatient center. In total, four Axis camera models were used:
● Model P1354-E (44), a fixed housing type for the exterior
● Model M3004-V (107), an interior dome camera
● Model P5524-E (8), a PTZ exterior camera
● Model P3214-V (105), a larger interior dome camera

For storage of the video data, the project involved seven HP StoreEasy series 1640 and 1440 servers with Windows Operating System Storage Server 2012 R2; of these, three 28 TB 1640 models are in the main building and two 8 TB 1440 models are in the outpatient center. In addition, a HP DL380p Gen8 Server is used by the main building’s office, and one HP DL320e Server is used in the outpatient center’s office.

The Welfare Board also has a room that we call the ‘replica,’ since it is very similar to our central command room, which is operated by an external security company. A camera and VMS system can be very good, but without any operator surveillance, a proactive tool becomes a passive one. – engineer Mauro Avecilla

According to Freddy Matamoros, hospital engineer manager for the Alejandro Mann medical center, the hospital had no previous experience with Milestone’s security solutions but found that the VMS fulfilled the necessary requirements for its project.

One of the best advantages Milestone has is its search features and easy distribution, which is superior to that of CCTV recording system equipment. This allows us to quickly search through categorized camera movements. The system generates alarms if there is a problem, if there is smoke for example, saving us the costs of extra surveillance personnel since the cameras can start capturing immediately when there’s an alarm. Also, the system makes the task of monitoring patients easier, guaranteeing complete attention. – Freddy Matamoros, hospital engineer manager for the Alejandro Mann medical center

Avecilla emphasized that the system enables integration and interconnection with access control systems, as well as with alarms. Three of the installed Axis camera models have entry and exit alarms.

In addition, this security system makes it possible to monitor critical healthcare procedures like sterilization, using the video to review how many cycles the nurses have completed and comparing that with the written records they have. This ensures better quality operational standards for staff and patients alike.

With this new technology and approach to managing the institution, Alfredo G. Paulson Women’s Hospital has become a model for health organizations in the region.