PA Medical School Implements Handheld Network

Thomas Jefferson University, an academic health center in Philadelphia, has deployed a wireless system that includes voice coverage and mobile broadband access. In a statement, Provider AT&T said it is supplying 150 Palm Treos, 30 Blackberry devices, and more than 150 Push to Talk handsets, which operate on the in-building wireless system and AT&T's third-generation (3G) BroadbandConnect network, to physicians and staff members.

"Jefferson is committed to excellence in patient care," said Stephen Tranquillo, CIO for the university. "Since communication at every level is vital to the patient care process, it was a natural step to leverage a system that allows our staff, physicians, and other healthcare providers access to people and information."

More devices likely will be supplied for use throughout the hospital and university, and they will enable users to connect to hospital data via e-mail, sync calendar functions and search pharmaceutical, or medical journal Web sites.

"AT&T is committed to providing wireless coverage and services where our customers want and need them the most," said Dan Lafond, vice president and general manager for AT&T's wireless operations in Greater Philadelphia. "Instead of using multiple devices and systems to send and receive pages, e-mail and phone calls, medical personnel now can use a single device from AT&T to access patient records from the hospital's intranet, make phone calls or keep up with e-mail both in and out of the hospital."

The in-building wireless antenna system provides coverage for AT&T's wireless customers at Jefferson, including emergency rooms, operating facilities, patient rooms and visitor areas.

Thomas Jefferson University encompasses three schools: Jefferson Medical College, Jefferson College of Graduate Studies, and Jefferson College of Health Professions.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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