Wireless Telemetry from Wright Brothers Ensures Operating Room Efficiency with VMG telemetry
Hospitals are required to have alarm systems to notify them of problems within the operating room gas systems, but when an error occurs, it could have major ramifications. These alarms are often monitored by the facility manager, who then has to correctly identify and resolve the problem – or in most cases, wait for someone who can. Any delay could result in shutting down the entire operating room, which is obviously bad for business, but more importantly, it jeopardizes the health and safety of patients.
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) has eliminated these concerns thanks to an affordable wireless telemetry implemented by Wright Brothers, Inc.’s Vendor Managed Gas (http://www.vmg.us.com/).
Wright Brothers was already CCHMC’s gas vendor supplying the nitrogen used for anesthesia, lifts and air tools in the operating room, so when they partnered with Verizon on the Vendor Managed Gas (VMG) wireless telemetry, the hospital was a natural fit.
Utilizing Verizon’s wireless network, VMG provides 24/7 monitoring of CCHMC’s Nitrogen bulk tank and sends alerts on tank levels and performance directly to both CCHMC facility managers and Wright Brothers.
“VMG is the first affordable plug and play wireless telemetry that simultaneously monitors tank levels and gas system performance using cellular and RF technology,” said Charlie Wright, CEO of Wright Brothers, Inc. “The advantage for CCHMC and other medical facilities is that the notifications come directly to us – their gas vendor – so we can easily identify and repair a problem before it becomes a larger issue.”
In just eight months, CCHMC has realized tremendous benefits to the VMG system. Wright Brothers installed the system, customized the alerts based on the hospital’s needs and monitors the bulk tank, standby system and emergency backup.
“The installation was simple with no inconvenience to the staff or hospitals,” said Robert Schultz, Regulatory Specialist, Facilities, for Cincinnati Children’s. “Since the installation, we no longer have to be concerned with ordering gas or calling them if there is a concern. The system has proven to be reliable.”
The VMG system also provides a wide range of analytics which help benchmark performance and indicate future need, enabling CCHMC to forecast for budget and peak usage times.
“The fact that we can get on the system and look at the numbers is great for trending purposes,” Schultz said.
This advanced data helped solve a problem with CCHMC’s bulk tank almost immediately . As in many operating rooms, a lot of gas was used during peak hours during the day, but was then shut off after the regular schedule was complete. Upon being shut off, the pressure in the lines built up and the gas vented out. By accessing the usage data provided by Vendor Managed Gas, Wright Brothers was able to determine the venting was causing the safety equipment to freeze open. Rather than mistakenly refilling the tank or addressing other issues, Wright Brothers was able to simply replace the safety equipment to correct the problem.
Central to VMG’s performance is Verizon’s wireless network. Since monitoring the gas systems is a requirement for hospitals, Wright Brothers sought a wireless partner that provided the best coverage.
“Simply put, Verizon’s network is mandatory to what we do,” said Mike Ahrens, Technical Lead “We don’t’ exist without Verizon’s absolute coverage.”
As for Schultz, he sees the broader implications for VMG and its use across multiple industries.
“I would recommend VMG for any gas system,” he said.