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7SIGNAL Helps a Leading Hospital System Identify Root Causes of Wi-Fi Issues

Large organizations often have challenges identifying what’s causing WLAN problems. 7SIGNAL recently helped a leading medical care system gain crucial visibility.

Key takeaways:

  • A leading hospital system dealt with workstation on wheels (WOW) connectivity issues and trouble identifying the underlying causes of these problems.
  • Wi-Fi issues causing inconsistent connectivity like client roaming, congestion, interference, improperly configured access points, and more are common in medical settings.
  • IT deployed 7SIGNAL’s monitoring platform to increase visibility, drive fast solutions, and back up network design decisions with performance data.

Large organizations can’t solve complex Wi-Fi issues without the right visibility and the monitoring solutions that provide it. 7SIGNAL recently helped a leading hospital system with over 22,000 employees and 2,000 operating beds achieve this goal. This internationally recognized system includes an academic medical center, several community hospitals, a long-term acute care hospital, a research institute, and more facilities. 

Healthcare providers were experiencing connectivity issues with new Linux workstations on wheels (WOWs)—essential devices that help deliver services efficiently and support patient outcomes. IT staff also needed a way to back up network design decisions with data while identifying the precise reasons for performance hurdles. 7SIGNAL’s platform helps them uncover this information with 24/7 monitoring and in-depth analytics and reporting.

What Wi-Fi issues are common in hospitals?

Mobile WOWs are a convenient way for physicians and nurses to access and input data at the point of care, enabling faster and more accurate services. But these workstations require a consistent, robust wireless connection to achieve this goal—it’s crucial they stay connected so that information isn’t inaccessible or outdated.

Many Wi-Fi devices struggle to roam from access point (AP) to access point effectively. And in high-mobility environments like hospitals, this is a leading cause of poor end-user experiences, particularly with WOWs.

Additional WLAN challenges in hospital systems include issues affecting many other clients, from health-monitoring wearables to patients' smartphones, along with the sheer quantity and variety of this equipment within a network’s coverage area. A range of devices competes for APs at any given time, and this density can impair connectivity and performance. 

Compounding these challenges is a failure to determine specific causes and assess connectivity from the end-user's perspective instead of merely a network infrastructure view. Without knowing how individual clients experience the WLAN at a given moment, it’s difficult and sometimes impossible to uncover the true culprits—whether those are misconfigured access points, network design failures, application-specific issues, materials or radio-frequency interference, or many other sources.

Medical devices in hospitals must have a reliable, unwavering Wi-Fi connection. Otherwise, critical information needed by patients and care providers cannot be shared or accessed—and much of today’s other vital medical equipment won’t function properly.

How 7SIGNAL helps large hospital systems

Visibility is crucial for hospital network managers to identify specific reasons for drops or otherwise impaired performance and continue improving how end-users experience connections. Mobile Eye® from 7SIGNAL, the first-ever Wi-Fi performance agent for mobile devices, helps organizations gain this clarity. Previously unknown problems like client roaming issues and outdated wireless drivers can now be easily identified and addressed.

Over half of hospitals spend up to 500 hours on Wi-Fi maintenance and troubleshooting. But IDC research assessing organizations using the Mobile Eye found:

  • A 43% reduction in unplanned downtime
  • 59% less time spent on Wi-Fi troubleshooting
  • More than 3,000 end-user productivity hours gained each year
  • 20% fewer help desk calls

7SIGNAL’s wireless experience monitoring solutions help medical facilities around the country improve their level of care with stronger, dependable Wi-Fi. 

Try out this quick online assessment from IDC to see the possible value of wireless network monitoring. It estimates the ROI that 7SIGNAL’s Mobile Eye could achieve for your organization.

7SIGNAL® is the leader in wireless experience monitoring, providing insight into wireless networks and control over Wi-Fi performance so businesses and organizations can thrive. Our cloud-based wireless network monitoring platform continually tests and measures Wi-Fi performance at the edges of the network, enabling fast solutions to digital experience issues and stronger connections for mission-critical users, devices, and applications. Learn more at www.7signal.com.