Clinic's security and productivity

August 2012 Surveillance, Healthcare (Industry)

Life Brenthurst Clinic in Johannesburg needed to modernise its video surveillance system. As with similar facilities throughout the city, petty crime and instances of low productivity stemming from people evading responsibility needed to be managed, and Life Brenthurst Clinic was determined to be at the forefront in excellent service delivery.

The Life Brenthurst Clinic is a long-established clinic with an excellent reputation. A high-quality monitoring system was seen as a key element in the clinic’s strategy to deliver excellent service in the face of industry-wide staff and skills shortages.

The existing analogue CCTV system delivered poor quality monochrome images that were hard to access (from tapes) when needed but, in any event, largely useless. Part of the upgrade plan for the facility was to provide a safe and secure environment, with the ability to assure stringent quality standards of health provision. The owners and investors wanted to secure their return on their investment in the facility.

Axis partner Camsecure recommended replacing the analogue cameras, multiplexers and VCRs with Axis network cameras and a recording and monitoring solution from NUUO. The first phase of the installation comprised 18 Axis 207 cameras indoors and an Axis 214 PTZ outside the main entrance. For budgetary reasons, the outside analogue cameras were retained but brought into the digital environment via an Axis 240Q video encoder. A dedicated Gigabit Ethernet network was installed to transport the image.

Rapid deployment and ease of expansion were other strong selling points. The elimination of dozens of cable runs was a further major advantage. The old system had 32 cameras with coaxial and power cables choking up the trunking. Mohamed Bera, services manager at the clinic, remarked: “Now we have just one network cable that supports all the cameras. It just makes life so easy for everyone who has to work in the services spaces.”

The cost of maintaining the system has also dropped as the in-house IT support team has the competencies needed, so they no longer have to rely on outside contractors. The control room staff rapidly felt at home with the system with its familiar PC-based paradigm.

The system has been extremely well accepted by the security personnel who see it as making a daunting job easier, breaking the monotony of patrols and increasing the area they can cover, thereby reducing the risk of an incident.

The new system has proven itself effective in more ways than anticipated. Security staff in the parking area and on the road outside are more effective as the manager can see when they are not carrying out their duties properly. Internal theft and equipment abuse, as well as incorrect or inadequate adherence to standards and procedures, can be recorded and effectively policed as positive identification of individuals is now possible.

A second phase extending the IP camera coverage to all outside areas and adding cameras for nursing stations and ward approaches has already been approved. “We are now in a position to prevent incidents rather than reacting after the occurrence,” Bera concludes.


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