Care standards and accountability are priorities for mental healthcare centre
A national centre of excellence for the treatment of young people with complex mental health problems has been transformed under a £7 million refurbishment, making it one of the most advanced care facilities in the UK.
Austen House, run by Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust, provides secure accommodation and treatment for children aged 12-18 with specialist mental health needs, who require the highest standards of protection.
In 2018-19 Austen House was earmarked for a comprehensive surveillance system upgrade following a review of care standards across the Trust. IDIS video technology was chosen as the best-fit for this modernisation, which is part of one of the biggest overhauls of its kind ever undertaken in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS). Specialist security systems integrator ISD Tech was awarded this important contract.
Video is the answer to key challenges
Due to the specialised needs of patients at the unit, a priority requirement of clinical provision at Austen House is keeping patients and staff safe from harm. Surveillance was identified as a key tool for this because it would allow incidents to be investigated and care practices to be monitored and improved.
So, an affordable video solution was needed that would guarantee coverage of all social and communal areas - including corridors, wards, and specialist educational facilities - with no blind spots. It would need to be easy for non-specialist staff to use, including clinicians and senior managers, and would have to comply with NHS requirements for cybersecurity. And the video installation would need to be carefully coordinated as part of a wider overhaul of facilities at the site. IDIS technology was identified as the best value and most robust solution, and one that would be the quickest and least disruptive to install.
12MP Super Fisheye cameras ensure complete site coverage
To guarantee evidential standard video coverage of all communal areas at Austen House, the ISD Tech team installed 96 IDIS 12MP Super Fisheye cameras, plus a mix of 5MP bullet and PTZ cameras, connected to 32-channel NVRs.
These Super Fisheyes provide comprehensive surveillance much more affordably than the alternative of using three or more fixed lens cameras. They deliver complete high-definition image capture with no blind spots and allow users, including clinical staff and managers, to dewarp in both live view mode and playback.
An array of 5MP bullet and PTZ cameras, deployed around the building exteriors, provides day and night coverage of the multiuse games area, gardens, and car parks as well as the perimeter. Built-in IR enables night-time image capture at distances up to 30m, and the cameras enable intelligent functions such as active tampering alarms, motion detection, auto-tracking and trip zones.
All the IDIS cameras benefit from true plug-and-play set up, which allowed the ISD Tech engineers to complete their work ahead of schedule. And this easy ‘one-click’ set up is not only faster, it eliminates the cybersecurity risks associated with manual password entry. In addition, IDIS NVRs come with built-in PoE switches, reducing the need for cabling work.
The end-to-end IDIS solution allows authorised staff to access to live and recorded footage from workstations around the site, with use of specific video tools limited to staff according to their location and role. IDIS HD monitors, designed for 24/7 surveillance, enable at-risk patients to be continually watched over. Crucially, the Trust can link this new IDIS solution to its local area networks (LANs) without increasing the risk of hacking, thanks to IDIS’s use of proprietary software which is inherently cybersecure. And IDIS Smart Failover protection ensures 24/7 continued recording even during network instability or drop-out.
Results and Benefits
The highest care standards and safety for patients and staff
ISD Tech and IDIS worked seamlessly with the main construction company, Kier, to complete the entire refurbishment two months ahead of schedule – resulting in improved care for vulnerable young people, and the rehabilitation they need to return to the community.
The video solution has given clinicians and senior managers at Austen House a complete overview of all internal and external communal areas including education facilities, music and sensory spaces, a gym and art studio as well as higher risk isolation rooms. For the first time, staff can easily search and review incidents using the advanced features that come with the totally cost-free IDIS Center video management software (VMS).
Footage from the 12MP Super Fisheye cameras gives a full 360 view with a choice of 6 view modes and the ability to dewarp footage retrospectively.
This guaranteed video coverage is not just improving standards of care but also accountability, providing a complete record of events, making it easy for incidents to be investigated, and video evidence to be provided whenever required.
The ISD Tech team replaced an outdated system with an affordable cybersecure solution that is easy to maintain and operate without any ongoing license fees. The system is protected by the industry best IDIS Ultimate Warranty, ensuring low total cost of ownership and outstanding value for the NHS.
"Our upgraded IDIS video solution makes it easy for our clinical teams to review incidents quickly and work with external investigators whenever required. It’s not just an important tool for improving patient care, it allows us to maintain full public confidence and accountability."
Head of Security at Southern Health NHS Trust