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CASE STUDY: Philips PDS helps bring home comforts to hospital patients in Belgium

As part of a multi-million euro upgrade, AZ Sint-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV, one of Belgium’s largest and leading hospitals, installed more than 500 pro-displays to help improve the comfort and care of its patients, whilst providing extensive, more personalised content control and management opportunities.

As the global population continues to rise (up from 7 billion to 7.8 billion in the past decade), coupled with an ageing population (73.5 years in 2018 to 74.4 in 2022), plus unprecedented and unexpected health threats – such as the coronavirus – the demand for hospital care is unforgiving.

Nicknamed the ‘Capital of Europe’, Belgium is home to 209 hospitals and one of the world’s most diverse populations (up by a million since 2005), with more than 180 nationalities and 108 spoken languages in the country.

With tens of thousands of daily hospital visitors and admissions, 64,000 beds and an average stay of approximately 6.4 days, the need for round the clock communication and managing the comfort and wellbeing of patients is of vital importance.

This is certainly the case for AZ Sint-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV, one of Belgium’s largest and leading hospitals, with over 1,182 beds and 2,380 full-time staff.

Spread over three campuses; Sint-Jan and Sint-Franciscus Xaverius in Bruges, and the Henri Serruys, located along the North Sea coastline in nearby Ostend, the hospital has a history spanning eight centuries, and offers everything from basic care to more highly specialized treatment, seeing more than 300,000 people each year.

“The developments and improvements in patient care never stand still. Every patient can come to us, for basic services as well as highly specialized care applications. We want to remain a reference in the region through our personal approach, professional development and mutual cooperation”, an AZ Sint-Jan spokesperson commented.

Having first opened its doors back in 1150, the Sint-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV hospital – a true historic landmark – has, as you’d expect, seen considerable expansions, renovations and changes in infrastructure over time.

Renowned both nationally and internationally for its quality assurance and patient satisfaction, the hospital has recently undergone a substantial upgrade, with internal and external renovations to its facilities and equipment.

With changes in technological advancements, the entire hospital required a major update to its cabling and connectivity as part of its ever-evolving ambitions to maintain the highest standards in modern comfort, including entertainments services and communications to its diverse range of patients.

As part of the upgrade, old analogue systems and CRT televisions desperately needed replacing, making way for digital interactivity and infinite possibilities.

€3.4 million of its budget was reserved for ‘other equipment’, which included the rollout of LCD TVs inside 500 patient rooms.

To meet the hospital’s needs, the team at AZ Sint-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV partnered with Tele-Signal Electronics, a leading Belgium-based AV integration firm, specialising in the installation of Digital Signage, Pro TVs and IPTV Beside Multimedia inside hospitals, rest homes and hotels, among others.

Founded in 1978, the family-run business has a proud portfolio and reputation in providing digital signage and IPTV solutions to major organisations and institutions around the county. With a proven track record working together, Tele-Signal teamed up with the Philips Professional Display Solutions to develop a future-proof infotainment system throughout all three campuses of the hospital.

In total, 500 securely connected 32” Philips MediaSuite and 19” Philips Heartline Professional TVs were selected and implemented in patient waiting rooms and treatment rooms.

Jochen Verbrugghe, owner of NV Tele-Signal Electronics, commented: “Implementing our all-in-one OSCART IPTV platform onto Philips displays, patients are able to feel more at ease through informative video clips tailored to their specific needs. These clips can be displayed in many languages​, allowing all patients to enjoy the IPTV experience, regardless of their nationality.

We like working with Philips Professional Display Solutions because their service and commitment to their customers is very strong.”

IPTV / Home comforts
Leading cloud-based management and control solutions provider, Tele-Signal Electronics’ OSCART IPTV technologies was selected to control and manage all content provided on each display – as well as monitors located in waiting rooms and reception areas – whether displaying specific messages (in a specific language) on a single or collective basis.

Running on Android, Philips PDS’ Google-certified MediaSuite Pro TVs were selected, in part, due to the their extensive range of hospitality features – helping to keep patients entertained, with access to wide range of channels, popular apps, as well as being able to view content directly from a mobile device via Chromecast.

Healthy environment

Philips PDS’ HeartLine displays are bedside TVs designed specifically for the healthcare industry, providing improved patient comfort, while adhering to strict and sensitively hospital regulations around health, hygiene and, importantly, security.

The TVs, which can be installed in close proximity to patients, are built using JIS Z2801 compliant antimicrobial additive in their housing to create a protective shield that impedes the growth of the most common microorganisms, such as Staphylococcus aureus (Gastroenteritis), Escherichia coli (E Coli) and Klebsiella (Pneumonia).

The HeartLine is also equipped with a toughened hydrophobic flat safety glass front, repelling fingerprints and making it easy to clean. It has no raised buttons, which means no crevices for germs to get into.

In addition, galvanic isolation ensures the safest possible connection between the patient’s headphones, with no current able to pass from the headphone circuit into the surrounding electrical environment, ensuring the protection of both patient and sensitive medical instruments.

Tom Roef, Sales Manager Professional TV at Philips PDS added: “We’re delight to have supported Tele-Signal Electronics in this important installation at the AZ Sint-Jan Brugge-Oostende AV.

“Hospitals can be a scary place for patients and, here at Philips Professional Display Solutions, our strategy is always – whether for a hotel or a hospital ward – to help create a home from home entertainment experience. Mental health can be as important as physical health. With MediaSuite and our range of dedicated HeartLine bedside TVs, we’re able to tick all the right boxes to ensure the hospital is able to control and manage its communications in a simple and efficient way in almost any language, while at the same time offering patients a more comfortable and personalised experience.”

Key benefits

Interactive information: Welcome visitors, inform them and express the right image in a way they can understand, easily choosing, creating and displaying content on selected screens at any time.

Easy content updates: Content can be easily updated by the hospital staff based on single patient rooms and multi-patient wards to ensure that the right information or entertainment is provided at all times.

Remote upgrades: Software updates can be remotely deployed to ensure the latest features and security patches are installed. Updates are instant and can be directed to the entire set of screens or selected sectors.

Energy efficient: All the displays selected – including MediaSuite and HeartLine – require very low power consumption, which helps the hospital keep running costs down.

Future-proof technology: New IPTV and Digital Signage features can be quickly deployed without additional hardware or cabling, ensuring quick and cost-effective results.