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Wednesday, 07 October 2009 09:15

Epworth Healthcare supports growth with Siemens IP system

Epworth Healthcare, Melbourne’s largest not-for-profit private hospital group, has selected a new IP communications system that it says will significantly improve the quality of its patient and client customer service, help generate substantial cost savings, assist in providing improvements in quality and capabilities for users of the telephone system, and help support the healthcare provider’s plans for significant future growth.

Built around four Siemens enterprise communications group (SEN Group) HiPath 4000 systems, the new platform replaces several legacy systems from three vendors. The system will be used by 4,000 staff across four of Epworth’s five sites, and will include 100 DECT wireless handsets, for use by roaming medical personnel and other staff.

Epworth IT director, Mike Broady, says the hospital chose the SEN Group because they were impressed with the organisation’s “attitude and strong customer relationship skills.

“We found the Siemens product to be superior, but we also liked their commitment to a high level of customer service, which at the end of day is equally as important as the product itself.

“Considering our major expansion plans, we were looking for a flexible system that would help position ourselves for future growth. Siemens demonstrated this flexibility through real-life examples during the sales process. We’re extremely pleased with the fit to our business and looking forward to a strong partnership going forward.”

Siemens integration partner, Communications Australia, began implementation of the project in July, with a forecasted completion date of December this year.

Communcations Australia sales director, Alf Harding, said today the hospital was after a reliable system with advanced call management features, such as locating users as they move around.

“An IP and screen-based console all working off the one solution makes it a lot easier to locate the whereabouts of staff and connect phone calls through to them. And when a patient moves from one ward to the next, they can keep the same extension number; the number goes along with them.”

Harding said the system is designed to provide greater convenience for all, and that “people who call Epworth Freemasons can now be put through to Epworth Richmond.  All staff will now have access to one sophisticated and easy-to-use voicemail system.”

According to Harding, the solution was also designed to enable Epworth to establish a dedicated call centre to handle inbound patient enquiries and pre and post patient care, and he said the consolidation of the various systems would help contribute to “substantial cost savings for the group,” and that “replacing multiple legacy systems with new technology helps to reduce maintenance costs.”

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