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IoT at the service of Spanish hospitals in the fight against COVID-19 with LoRaWAN-connected patient bedside nurse-call buttons

Dealing with increased Covid patients flow, Barcelona hospitals implemented a nurse-call solution using wireless sensors with geolocated buttons from Abeeway, geolocation specialist within the Actility Group, the world leader in IoT LPWAN connectivity solutions, alongside the contribution of technology companies Everynet, for the network infrastructure, Redexia, for the IoT connectivity in Spain,  myDevices, for the software platform, including Semtech, which also contributed along others to cover the costs in order to make the solution free for the hospitals. 

Picture of a hospital room equipped with a micro tracker

As the COVID-19 pandemic escalated during March, many hospitals are dealing with an overflow of patients, putting pressure on medical staff working in facilities that are already at capacity, creating a state of medical war zone.  In an initiative to support the Spanish healthcare system with the application of the latest secure wireless network technology – LoRaWAN® – Actility, Everynet and Redexia provided Barcelona hospitals with hundreds of Abeeway IoT devices to endow temporary hospital facilities with geolocated nurse-call buttons, at no charge, in order for patients to be able to notify medical personnel in case of urgent needs.  

As there is no infrastructure in ad-hoc field hospitals, LoRaWAN® is the perfect communication protocol to implement IoT solutions quickly, as it offers excellent penetration through walls and enables seamless indoor and outdoor wireless coverage. The ultra-low power consumption allows the tiny battery powered devices to last for months before requiring a charge. 

Within this consortium of technology partners, local service providers Everynet and Redexia have created the necessary LoRaWAN network for the hospital facilities. Everynet, in particular, has offered its secure wireless data network to the healthcare system for free for the entire duration of the emergency. The myDevices software IoT platform collects and presents the data to healthcare professionals in a clear dashboard and enables real-time nurse-call alerts with the systemRedexia played a vital role to coordinate the integration and deployment logistics and to get this valuable system in to the hands of the healthcare system. Finally, Semtech is the IP owner of the underlying LoRa Technology, and contributed along the others to cover the cost of devices. 

Photo of a nurse holding several abeeway micro trackers

Together these technology pioneers pooled their resources to endow hospitals Bellvitge, San Pau, Parc Taulí, Germans Trias i Pujol and Del Mar in Barcelona with this important nurse-call solution. As of today, nurse-call buttons were installed directly in each of 750 hospital beds so that patients can notify an emergency at any time

The Abeeway micro-tracker devices were perfect for the purpose, providing an easily actionable button, easy to clean (waterproof) and compact. The button also embeds a Bluetooth scanner which can recognize the bed or surrounding equipment for easy location by hospital personnel, a GPS for outdoor location and as well as temperature sensor. A firmware update will soon enable contact tracing & physical distancing features leveraging the integrated 80dBa speaker.

Considering the devices long battery life, the quick deployment and the long-lasting service life, health structures will not need to worry about maintenance or management of the service, so that doctors and nurses only need to be fully focused on their duties and can promptly help those in need. 

Improving healthcare facilities operations for patients and staff is critical in an effective fight against the spread of Covid-19. With Abeeway devices communicating through LoRaWAN, nurses get real-time information about a patient call for a nurse and the positioning of the patient bed. This enhances overall patient safety and medical staff efficiency and allows to save lives

Olivier Hersent, CEO et Actility.

Abeeway devices are specifically designed to be easily used by people: not only patients, but also the personnel, workers in factories, constructions sites etc.  It is versatile and multi-purpose. The Abeeway Micro Tracker is a multi-mode tracker with embedded geolocation sensors for accurate outdoor and indoor geolocation, leveraging the very low-power LoRaWAN IoT connectivity. The device is also used for Proximity Registration, allowing efficient contact tracing for Covid-19, to maintain a dynamic virtual geofence around an employee at site levelpreventing and warning against proximity.

Picture of Lawrence Latham CEO of Everynet
We are honored and humbled that we could provide real help in such trying times and we hope our contribution will alleviate some of the burden on overloaded medical staff. We believe that our initiative to deliver our network for free, together with the strong ecosystem of partners that we built together with Redexia, can make a difference
 

says Lawrence Latham, CEO of Everynet

The unprecedented and rapid spread of the coronavirus has created a strain in the healthcare field with the immediate need to expand hospital capacity. myDevices is pleased to contribute to this cause, alongside our partners, by providing the LoRa-enabled technology to empower the solution. The Nurse-Call system effectively alerts medical staff when patients require assistance, essential in preserving patient lives, and the safety of the healthcare staff.

said Kevin Bromber, CEO & Founder of myDevices.

Photo of Kevin-Bromber, MyDevices CEO

About Abeeway, an Actility Group company   

Abeeway (www.abeeway.com) is the market leader in low-power indoor & outdoor fused geolocation and a provider of disruptive IoT tracking solutions worldwide. Abeeway offers the most energy-efficient, reliable and flexible geolocation solutions using unique tracking devices and a smart Multi-technology location system optimized for long-range and low-power-consumption leveraging LoRaWAN™ connectivity. Abeeway devices are available on ThingPark Market.  Abeeway is a member of the LoRa Alliance™

About Actility  

Actility (www.actility.com) is a world leader in Low-Power Wide-Area Networks (LPWAN) industrial-grade connectivity solutions for the Internet of Things. Actility provides its ThingPark™ platform and network technology to deploy, operate and maintain public and private wireless IoT networks within a unified, scalable and versatile network infrastructure. The vast majority of nationwide LoRaWAN® network service providers (over 50) and hundreds of companies trust ThingPark™ all over the world. Through its subsidiary Abeeway, Actility also provides patented ultra-low power tracking solutions.ThingPark Market offers the largest selection of interoperable IoT gateways, devices and applications to simplify and accelerate deployment of use cases.  

About Redexia 

Redexia (www.redexia.com) is the first LoRaWAN™ Network provider to launch services in Spain. Redexia helps companies, integrators, and other operators to take profit from all the advantages of LoRaWAN technology. With expertise than more than 15 years in telecom and infrastructure market, with more than 400 integrators located in Spain, Redexia targets to be the leader in IoT connectivity in Spain.

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About Everynet 

Everynet (www.everynet.com) has pioneered the concept of #BitsBillionsandCents: IoT digital transformation by connecting the most constrained devices at massive scale and for ultra-low cost. Everynet is leading the market with LoRaWAN™ innovation in both its commercial model and platform architecture to power shared infrastructure deployments, enabling a neutral host to build out high-quality infrastructure and leasing wholesale coverage to service providers. A model proven by Everynet’s flagship network: the highest utilized national LoRaWAN network in the world.

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About myDevices  

myDevices, the IoT solutions company, empowers channel and technology partners, and enterprises to quickly deploy and commercialize IoT solutions. The company’s mission is to simplify the connected world by providing tools that enable the creation of device and connectivity agnostic IoT Solutions for healthcare, hospitality, food service, industrial, and other verticals. myDevices is headquartered in Los Angeles, CA. For more information, please visit www.myDevices.com and www.pushandcall.com

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