San Antonio Community Hospital’s Doctors, Nurses and Patients Reap Benefits of Trapeze Networks WLAN Mobility System

PLEASANTON, Calif. – Oct. 20, 2003 – Global wireless local area network (WLAN) leader Trapeze Networksâ„? today disclosed that San Antonio Community Hospital, a 350-bed medical facility 30 miles east of Los Angeles, has relied on the Trapeze WLAN Mobility Systemâ„? to support its healthcare professionals for the past nine months.

“The Trapeze Networks Mobility System is the best WLAN enterprise system on the market today,” said Jan Snyder, Senior Network Consultant at the Upland, Calif. hospital. “Trapeze’s RingMaster software tool suite is incredibly powerful and has helped us design, configure and manage our new and improved enterprise WLAN while saving 50% of the total cost of ownership compared to all the other WLAN vendors in this market.”

Hospital Requirements

After experiencing multiple problems with their first-generation WLAN for about two years, San Antonio Community Hospital began looking for a next-generation WLAN system that would enable secure mobility so its 2,000 professional, technical, and service personnel – including more than 500 doctors and nurses – could communicate with each other at any time.

The hospital needed a fast, reliable and redundant WLAN with secure mobility to enable the medical staff to respond quickly in time-sensitive situations. Secure mobility also ensures that the 30,000 digital MRI and x-ray images it processes each month using the Picture Archive Communication System (PACS) – as well as patient records and medical history – remain secure and confidential on the WLAN, in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) of 1996.

In addition, the hospital sought to leverage the efficiencies of a WLAN to streamline the process of admitting, transferring and discharging patients in an effort to reduce operating costs at the non-profit facility. It also required a WLAN solution that would easily integrate and build upon the existing switched Layer 3 network infrastructure that had been built over the past four years.

The hospital chose the Trapeze WLAN Mobility System – which includes the Mobility Exchangeâ„? (MXâ„?) switch and Mobility Pointâ„? (MPâ„?) radios – because of its ability to enforce secure mobility and deliver cost savings through RingMasterâ„?, Trapeze’s pre- and post-deployment, planning, configuration and management software toolset.

Secure Mobility

The feature San Antonio Community Hospital admires the most about Trapeze is subnet roaming, which enables VLAN and subnet assignments, access control lists, authentications, quality of service levels and other assigned policies to stay with users from wired to wireless no matter where they roam.

The hospital employs digital certificates and 802.1X on the MX for strong, mutual authentication of wireless users and enforcement of network authorization as well as dynamic Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption with rotating broadcast/multicast keys to protect data transmitted across the air. The MX uses RADIUS and Authentication, Authorization and Accounting (AAA) to authenticate users, offloading most of the processing burden from the AAA backend. A dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP) server provides user IP addresses.

The Trapeze Mobility System provides a secure wireless Layer 2 connection preserving the Layer 3 path including the IP addresses, sessions and other wired Layer 3 attributes. The Trapeze Mobility System allows caregivers to continuously use applications such as IBEX, PACS, and telephony with no disruption while going to where patients need them – at their bedside..

Total Cost of Ownership

RingMaster has reduced the hospital’s WLAN operating labor expenses by 90%. RingMaster’s virtual site survey and capacity planning tools allow San Antonio Community Hospital to import CAD floor plans and use them to design and configure the WLAN offline. RingMaster’s library of attenuators – representing doors, windows, walls and other physical obstacles – are applied to the plan to ensure the right radio frequency (RF) coverage. They can then save the plan and print a detailed work order for installers. It also lets them provision and deploy scores of configurations with one mouse click, while providing tools that map topologies and show RF coverage areas.

“By using the RingMaster tool suite we are able to reduce our operating labor expenses of our WLAN by 90% which therefore cuts our total cost of ownership in half, compared to any other WLAN vendor,” concluded Snyder.

Applications Running Over Wireless LAN

San Antonio Community Hospital runs several mission-critical applications over its Trapeze WLAN, including ibex Healthdata Systems high speed emergency room data entry software and PACs on mobile PCs. The ibex data entry software permits patient data entry at the bedside in the emergency room and PACs permits physicians to view digital x-rays immediately in emergency and in surgery. The neurosurgeons especially like PACS over wireless mobile PCs because it allows them to download 156 CAT scan images and see them conveniently on one display system.

“We have also tested and plan to use Vocera hands-free telephones, the Eclipsys Pocket XA 7000 on PDAs and Telesym software for wireless IP telephony, all running over our Trapeze WLAN Mobility System,” said Irv Hoff, Manager of Converged Networks Information Services at San Antonio Community Hospital. “The Trapeze system is the most secure WLAN system we’ve tested as well as the most compatible with all of the applications we are running in our network.”

About Trapeze Networks

Trapeze Networks delivers the power of business applications and services to the mobile enterprise workforce. The company’s wireless LAN Mobility System enhances productivity, introduces new efficiencies and accelerates business response time by delivering secure mobility to users, pre and post deployment planning and management tools to IT, and seamless integration between wired and wireless. In the first four months of shipping its WLAN Mobility System, Trapeze has been the recipient of five industry awards in recognition of its product and technology strength. Founded in March 2002, Trapeze raised $50 million in venture funding to date and is headquartered in Pleasanton, Calif., U.S.A. For more information, please visit

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