One of Europe’s biggest children’s hospitals has announced that it will be completely wireless within four months.

Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust in Liverpool started deploying Xirrus’ Wi-Fi Array three weeks ago in its clinical areas. It intends to provide 100% coverage, including lobbies and outside areas, by the summer.

This should allow doctors, nurses, staff, patients and guests to use wi-fi enabled laptops and hand-held computers across the site.

It will also enable the trust to deliver a host of wireless applications, including electronic prescribing, radio frequency identification tagging and voice over wi-fi.

David Murphy, assistant director of information and communications at Alder Hey said: “We needed cost effective, site wide wireless coverage that could be deployed as soon as possible.

“We were very strict by saying if there wasn’t complete coverage for any reason, the provider would make sure that was rectified at no additional cost. Time is a major issue for us, as we needed the first stage of the project by the end of the financial year.”

The trust also needed a solution that did not take up a large amount of space for switches and controllers. The Xirrus Wi-Fi Array will require 194 cable drops to cover the entire campus.

The new system is being built by Pinacl Solutions. Alder Hey is one of the largest and busiest children’s hospitals in the UK. It has an international reputation as a centre of excellence for children with cancer, heart, spinal and brain disease. It sees and treats more than 200,000 children a year.

Link: Xirrus