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PABX Upgrade At Waikato Hospital May Create Delays

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Kay Gregory
Kay Gregory

People who phone Waikato Hospital over Labour Weekend may experience delays due to the installation of a new $2.25 million PABX telephone system.

And while they're waiting for a connection, callers will be treated to a familiar voice on the line - former TVNZ host Kay Gregory who recorded a series of messages which play to callers.

Voice Communications manager Jan Scott said there was also the possibility there might be delays after the long weekend.

"We're just asking people to be aware of possible delays. If it's a medical emergency people should ring 111 anyway but if you are trying to ring through to one of our clinics or our staff, we ask you to be patient."

Waikato Hospital has more than 6000 incoming telephone calls a day making it the country's busiest hospital. Waikato District Health Board approved the spending in July this year because the existing system no longer meets existing demands and future needs.

Telephone technology has moved considerably in the past 10 years with a distinct move away from analogue phones and into digital phones that provide significant reduction in cabling cost, superior flexibility with numbering schemes, and a functionality revolution in terms of what the phones can do.

Replacement of the existing analogue server, together with extension of the digital services, is essential to cope with the expected growth resulting from the changes in the physical buildings on campus, and to meet increased user requirements in clinical areas.

Work started on the project the day after the board approved it.

At the end of this project, the Waikato DHB will have: Set up a new telecommunications server room in the new Waikato Hospital Acute Services Building Replaced the aging telephone service with new analogue and digital voice services providing capacity to meet existing and predicted future demand Analogue and digital voice services in multiple locations on campus, providing a solution with automatic failover capability in the event of a major issue on the primary voice system, i.e. 24 x 7 voice service Continuity of paging, fax and Eftpos services across the campus The ability to expand its patient notes dictation system (Winscribe) delivered to clinicians through phones Continuity of lift alarms, panic alarms and building access alarm notifications Deployed 1800 new digital telephone handsets across the Waikato campus to replace existing analogue handsets and extend the digital voice capability A new extension numbering plan Trained users.

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