Case Study: AV in Healthcare: Faster Connectivity, Higher Resolution

Healthcare demands the best AV infrastructure on the market, and Madison Technologies’ Ken Kyle has all the right prescriptions.

As screen resolution and connection speeds increase, AV is becoming a major contributor to healthcare. Ken Kyle is General Manager of Broadcast & Audio Visual at Madison Technologies, and he says many AV applications, both traditional and emerging, are being used in healthcare.

“The new trends are video conferencing and TelePresence systems, with healthcare organisations adopting collaborative healthcare solutions to better utilise specialist teams regardless of location,” he says.

Connectivity that’s more reliable and faster means a top surgeon in Melbourne can ‘sit in’ on an operation in Darwin without screen lag or any of the problems associated with streaming vision.

“Companies like our partner Huawei have dedicated Telemedicine solutions, all-in-one ICT devices on a mobile stand featuring full video conferencing facilities, and interoperability with many other medical peripherals,” Kyle says.

“These are battery driven, Wi-Fi enabled, voice activated systems, well thought out, and transforming healthcare.”

New technology a boom for patients

As a manufacturer of cable and a distributor of major AV brands in Australia, Madison Technologies has a hand in major projects around the country. Recently, it rolled out SpinetiX Digital signage players to NSW Health Pathology. These will be utilised across the state in pathology wards for displaying information to the patient.

Kyle adds that Madison Technologies has supplied thousands of kilometres of general AV and networking cables across many hospital projects around Australia over the years.

SpinetiX is the award-winning digital signage manufacturer of the HMP (Hyper Media Players) with built-in Fusion Software. It turns any digital display into an autonomous and networked device. With its Elementi software, multiple screens can easily be connected together and given the same or multiple dynamic content feeds. The screens may be scattered across multiple locations or, in the case of a video wall, literally bolted together.

“We were also involved with an interesting project a while back with the Australian Medical Council,” he says.

“It was an examination and testing facility for international medical graduates looking to practice locally. The SpinetiX product was an integral part of the testing procedure.

“More recently there is a trend towards installing sound masking for patient privacy into clinics and wellness centres and we’ve supplied designs and product for many such installations.”

Sound masking is used in situations where private medical conversations may be overheard, for example in busy wards. It adds an unobtrusive background sound to reduce the intelligibility of human speech, which leads to increased privacy.

The need for high resolution screens

The debate about display screen resolution – 1080p, 4K, 8K – is easily resolved. In healthcare, you need the most detailed image possible.

“In any sort of Telemedicine application utilising streaming or medical visualisation, high definition image quality is an obvious advantage,” Kyle says.

“Enhanced imagery will assist in surgery, in diagnosis, with collaboration, all contributing to a better outcome for the patient. I think more so than any other market vertical, there is a real need for the highest quality image we can produce in healthcare.”

Because driving more data over networks at a faster speed is a must in healthcare, Kyle says the national broadband network (NBN) will offer advantages to those practicing medicine in rural and remote locations, and those who may have had to travel great distances to access healthcare.

“It’s now possible to access a doctor or specialist who can provide consultation over a video conference,” Kyle says. “Really, anyone involved in Telehealth will benefit from faster broadband – quite essential for real-time patient to doctor communication.”

At its exhibit at Integrate 2017, Madison Technologies will be featuring most of the products outlined above, says Kyle.

“Cambridge Sound have released specific sound masking solutions for hospital environments, noting that rest and relaxation improve medical outcomes, and that masking of excessive noise will assist with this. We’ll have experts from Cambridge Sound Management on hand to discuss that system,” he says.

As well as that, the Assistive Listening solutions from AUDIOropa and Humantechnik will be showcased. SpinetiX for signage, and messaging applications will be on-hand, plus the all-important infrastructure products that connect all these elements together.

“Obviously all of the glue products come into play again, being even more important than in hospitality, because these tend to be running more critical systems,” Kyle says.

“Why would you put your life in the hands of sub-standard connectivity products that are struggling to deliver the required audio or video signals to the specialist making the decisions?”

See Madison Technologies on Stand K26 at Integrate this 29-31 August at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre. Register for free exhibition entry here.