Archive for 2008

It’s Not Easy Being a Hospital’s Mobile Device Manager (PDAStreet.com Article)

December 4, 2008 No comments yet

Over the last five years, demand for mobile technologies in healthcare has risen exponentially. Unfortunately, additional headcount to keep those devices under control, as well as tools to manage these critical communication devices, has not kept pace. Today's telecommunications managers preside over an extensive investment in mobile devices, including: cell phones, pagers, smartphones, and PDAs, as well as inbuilding voice technologies from Vocera, Ascom, Polycom/Spectralink and Cisco. It's not unsual for even a small community hospitals' mobile assets to represent over $500,000+ of pure capital costs (and that doesn't include software licensing and on-going operational costs aside). In respect to asset management, ... More »

Why Putting an AP in Your Parking Lot Won't Really Help you stop Vocera Badges from Walking

October 2, 2008 No comments yet

Finding Vocera® devices that leave your campus is an issue that many customers are grappling with...What's an organization to do? Best practice for mobile asset management is a strong unit level coordination with well defined, managed procedures and financial accountability. In many organizations, despite management's best intentions, that turns out be difficult. It's not uncommon to put drop boxes by the employee exit. One of our customers experimented with badge sign-out that required users to give car keys (or something else essential) as collateral (I’m pretty sure this was abandoned). Other customers have even gone further to ensure control, including the ... More »

Announcing DeviceKeeper.com, Web-based Application that Tracks and Manages Mobile Devices

September 23, 2008 No comments yet

New software-as-a-service (SaaS) application like an insurance policy for mobile assets Stratford, Conn.—Regional technology solutions provider TPC Healthcare (www.tpchealthcare.com) today announced the release of its new DeviceKeeper.com (www.devicekeeper.com) service for hospitals and healthcare facilities. A hosted web application, DeviceKeeper.com was designed to provide healthcare organizations a simple, secure way to gain and maintain control of mobile assets, including badges from Vocera® (www.vocera.com), wireless phones (including in-house phones from Cisco, Ascom, and Polycom/Spectralink), smart phones, pagers, PDAs, and BlackBerrys®. With its easy-to-use, customizable interface, DeviceKeeper.com gives hospital administrators and department heads the ability to choose how they label, identify, and manage their mobile ... More »

Custom Vocera Headsets with Shortened Cords Available from DeviceKeeper.com

September 23, 2008 No comments yet

TPC Healthcare Delivers Customized Vocera-Ready Headsets through Its DeviceKeeper.com eStore Stratford, CT—As part of its ongoing commitment to supporting and optimizing the user experience of Vocera® customers, TPC Healthcare today announced the availability of custom Vocera-ready headsets through its DeviceKeeper.com ecommerce site. Offered in a basic earbud or deluxe models with boom, these customized headsets come with a shortened 9" cord suitable for use with the Vocera® headset lanyard. Plantronics, the previous supplier of Vocera-ready headset recently discontinued production of their line of headsets with shortened cords (like the MX150), leaving Vocera customers with little available options for headsets that would work ... More »

Watch out for Surveillance Cameras…Wireless Ones that Is

September 2, 2008 No comments yet

We've had several complaints over the last few weeks regarding the degradation of wireless voice quality at one of our hospital accounts.  What was perplexing about what we were hearing from users (and confirmed by our own people on site), is that the specific areas had previously not had problems.  Signal strength on Vocera badges seemed absolutely fine, and there was a nearby access point. Last Thursday, I joined David, one of our network engineers to investigate further.  This post is for the benefit of those without wireless expertise.  For the engineers reading this post, what we found out will not ... More »

When does a Badge's Last Used (BLU) status change?

August 29, 2008 No comments yet

Some of our users have noticed that the Vocera report server sometimes doesn't seem to know about certain badges being logged into. This has to do with how Vocera logs inventory data. In order for a badge’s "last used" status to change in the Badge Last Used (BLU) report (or Devicekeeper, for those of you that use it), a user has to log in the badge and still be logged in when the badge updates its inventory record in the logs. This update occurs every 15 minutes (from when the badge is powered on).

Let other users know where you are

June 16, 2008 No comments yet

Recently one of our customers asked if there was a way, when going off the Vocera network, to let other users know where they were instead of only hearing that the user was "not currently on the network". This would also help determine that a wireless problem was not to blame. Recording a greeting was the perfect solution for this. Just issue the command "Record a Greeting" and you can record a message that will be played when you are unreachable (i.e. "I'm currently at lunch and will return at 1pm"). The caller will then be given the opportunity to leave ... More »

Badge Labeling Tips

May 8, 2008 No comments yet

In order to help keep track of Vocera badges, it's a good idea to create a labeling scheme. For instance, have your Labor & Delivery unit badges labeled as L&D-1, L&D-2, etc. This helps units keep track of their inventory. It's also helpful if users try to use the same badge every day. It helps keep them from getting lost if someone from each shift is always looking for "their" badge and they know who uses it on the prior shift. Dymo and P-touch labels do the job quite well. Consider making the labels with enough tape ... More »

What's In Your Vocera Badge Repair Toolkit? Here's what's in mine.

May 8, 2008 No comments yet

I never go to a Vocera client site without the following in my tool bag: Vocera repair kit Goo Gone (or similar adhesive remover/cleaner) Napkins/tissues for applying the Goo Gone Paper clip or tweezers for removing pieces of broken battery clip from the grooves Super glue in case of broken plastic A couple of toothpicks - for applying glue Fine-point permanent marker (for writing the badge label info next to the bar code under the battery) Pencil eraser (for removing the aforementioned handwritten label if necessary)

Eeeww. My badge is covered in sticky tape adhesive and who knows what else.

May 8, 2008 No comments yet

Battery clips break. A temporary user fix is to tape the battery in place. Cellophane tape, medical tape, whatever is handy. Problem is, once the battery clip is fixed, the residue from the tape remains. Bring on the Goo Gone cleaner and wipe that adhesive mess right off. It's great stuff - gets the sticky stuff off and leaves the badge clean. I carry a small bottle of it in my badge repair kit.


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