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Ontario Regional Hospital Upgrade to Cybernet Units

North Bay Regional Health Center (NBRHC) is an acute care hospital servicing the northeast Ontario area. Their facility of close to 400 beds provides care to North Bay and its surrounding communities while also existing as the foremost specialized provider of mental health services in all of northeast Ontario.

Challenge Icon Challenge

North Bay was one of three hospitals in the North East Local Health Integration Network (LIHN) chosen for an initiative to switch to a single, unified, EMR system called Meditech Expanse. The goal of the project was to standardize the EMR software used across the LIHN network to improve interoperability and clinical collaboration efforts. Of course, as is usually the case when switching to a new EMR software, North Bay realized that their old hardware would need to be upgraded to meet the new program’s demands. 

The team had previously used commercial grade Dell laptops equipped onto carts but quickly realized that Meditech Expanse worked best with larger screens. This was because the new software housed large amounts of data that would require nurses on smaller screens to scroll excessively to view all of the available information. The North Bay team knew that scrolling like this often caused nurses to miss crucial information when treating patients. 

In an effort to create a solution that could house a larger computer, the team then started to look at powered medical computer carts but they were shocked to see the average price of even a single cart ran close to 5,000 dollars. Naturally, this caused them to instead search for battery powered medical computers that could help them bypass the insane upfront costs of a fleet of powered medical carts.

As North Bay continued to refine their search in this way, a clear picture of the kind of computer they needed started to form. What they needed was a device with a large screen capable of displaying Meditech Expanse’s data and a battery powered model with a long enough run time to last an entire shift. They also required a computer that could support the SSO authentication hardware their nurses use to clock in and out of work.

Solution Icon Solution

North Bay had originally entertained the idea of purchasing a battery powered all-in-one computer from a reseller named Tangent, a Taiwan importer, but quickly realized that Cybernet’s CyberMed NB22 model was a much more promising solution for several reasons. They were happy to see a 22” screen that could seamlessly be outfitted onto a lightweight medical cart, a notable upgrade from their older Dell laptops that only offered 15” screens. With the extra screen real estate, nurses could have access to all of the valuable patient information Meditech Expanse could collect without scrolling ad infinitum.

The team was also excited to see that the Cybernet unit could provide up to 21 hours of continuous power due to its three hot-swap batteries, meaning nearly two entire shifts’ worth of power without requiring a power outlet or clunky battery cart. Additionally, they noticed another very promising feature in the form of integrated SSO authentication hardware. Having their Imprivata certified hardware included within the computer itself meant fewer peripherals cluttering their nurses’ stations and more streamlined time-in capabilities for staff starting and ending their shifts.

Results Icon Results

After implementing the CyberMed NB22 models across their facility, the North Bay team noticed very promising results. Nurses were able to view vast swaths of patient information without meticulous window management and scrolling, lightweight computer cart setups were lasting for entire shifts without requiring recharge, and their SSO authentication hardware being integrated into the units themselves had nurses clocking in and out at their stations with nothing more than a tap of their badge.

At the beginning of the rollout, North Bay had noticed a couple of computers were freezing after long periods of inactivity and were quick to reach out to Cybernet’s support staff. The North Bay team commented that the support they received was responsive and comprehensive, providing them with several tools that helped diagnose the particular issue they were experiencing.

Being the larger of the three hospitals chosen for phase 1 of this initiative, the positive results North Bay saw with their NB22 units has convinced them to continue on with the next phase of their rollout. This will see the incorporation of more of these units into the other two LIHN hospitals switching to Meditech Expanse.

Seeing how effectively Cybernet answered their call for this new initiative, the North Bay team even commented that they plan on reaching out again for a few CyberMed M12 units dedicated to a nursing duress system they would like outfitted on every nursing station in their facility.

The Cybernet units have been great. Very good. Our team likes the screen size, the quality, and a lot of the feedback focuses on the integration of the SSO optics. From a technical standpoint, I love that. There's much less cables and clutter.

- Michael Deroche, IT Director