New IT solution for NZ's largest retirement village group
Oceania Healthcare is one of New Zealand’s largest owners and operators of retirement villages. The group has 46 locations across the country, with around 2500 care rooms and around 1000 independent living villas and apartments. Caring for over 4000 residents, the group prides itself on the care, choice, respect and dignity given to each individual.
In 2017, a full review of the company’s IT infrastructure was carried out. The infrastructure was ageing and was not uniform across the multiple sites. On completion of the review, the group made a commitment to undergo a digital transformation aiming for four main developments: 1) the installation of equipment that was easy to use; 2) centralised management of hardware and software; 3) standardised and integrated solutions for platforms; and 4) a robust and reliable backup solution for critical infrastructure.
Across the 46 sites, there were two main concerns for Oceania Healthcare when it came to the existing IT infrastructure: an ageing uninterrupted power supply (UPS) solution and lack of remote monitoring capability.
The existing UPS solution was approximately five years old and had not been well serviced, meaning the consumable battery components had not been replaced.
Contacting APC by Schneider Electric, Oceania Healthcare needed an IT solution that would be standardised across the sites, have remote access capability so that everything could be viewed from one location, and be reliable and robust so the company could ensure the ongoing care and support of their residents.
Andrew Mantle, ICT Support Manager at Oceania, said, “We need to provide a very reliable IT service to our facility care team to enable them to care for our residents without any technical issues.
“Our Resident Records, including all clinical information, is now digital and all care is fully or partially reliant on technology.
“Real-time data capture at point of care is crucial in improving the quality of care given to our residents. With readily available data we can progress from reactive to proactive care and aim high for predictive care in the future to our residents.”
At each care and village facility, Oceania Healthcare has IT network infrastructure, Wi-Fi infrastructure, emergency nurse call systems, clinical nursing stations and admin offices. To ensure these systems are online and available 24/7, APC Smart UPSs with 1 or 1.5 kVA network management cards were deployed throughout the sites.
Along with supplying the hardware, Schneider Electric also carried out the installation. There is a service agreement in place for maintenance support to ensure the products continue to work optimally over time.
At the larger facilities, an APC battery system has been installed to support critical loads for up to two hours. This will ensure the IT systems which house residents’ information, and critical nurse call systems, are always available.
Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure IT Expert software was chosen to monitor and manage the sites remotely. The cloud-based app allows users to proactively monitor and manage their IT equipment with customisable dashboards, remote device management, alert and alarm notifications as well as analytics for smarter decision-making.
For a multi-location group such as Oceania Healthcare, the solution allows easy access to all sites from one tool, producing efficiencies and benchmarking opportunities.
“The EcoStruxure IT Expert phone and desktop app has already proven itself,” Mantle said.
“The solution provides us with proactive alerts on issues not just relating to the UPS, but also heating in our facility comms rooms. Because we saw the value in the software very early on, we have also expanded the solution to encompass our nurse call system. Now we can ensure it is also always up and running and we continue to be ahead of any upcoming maintenance.”
To keep all the networking and comms hardware tidy and in good working order, APC Netshelter Power Distribution Units (PDUs) were included in the scope for each project. This helped to ensure consistency and standardisation across all sites.
Oceania Healthcare chose to have all the services installed by a Schneider Electric certified APC engineer. This gave them peace of mind that the project would be completed correctly, with increased speed and minimal downtime.
With the project successfully deployed and all facilities now live, Oceania Healthcare have a much better view of their IT infrastructure and a better understanding of their ongoing maintenance needs.
“Schneider Electric was able to complete the project swiftly and with minimal downtime,” Mantle said.
“Each facility deployment was very well planned and facility management and care teams were aware of the changes happening each day. This allowed us to ensure resident care was not affected in any way.”
In addition to the ongoing monitoring which EcoStruxure IT Expert offers, Oceania Healthcare have found the software to be beneficial in other areas too.
“EcoStruxure IT Expert also provides us with insightful analytics and predictive maintenance schedules. We can ensure maintenance is done proactively, reducing the likelihood of downtime.
“I am very happy with the outcomes of the project and we are very proud of what we’ve achieved. We look forward to continuing to work with Schneider Electric in the future on new facility development projects.”
Phone: 02 9125 8000
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