Blood Bank Receives Safety Transfusion

When a medical emergency develops and people are in need, Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) is there to help, striving to provide the safest and highest quality blood supply, services and health programs.

As the 10th largest nonprofit regional blood center in the United States, OBI’s operations are comprised of 12 campus-style locations including a main headquarters in Oklahoma City and laboratories and donor centers spread throughout Oklahoma and north central Texas. In all, OBI supplies more than 150 medical facilities throughout the region with life-saving transfusion products and clinical services.

Considering its immense mission, OBI’s facilities undergo constant expansion and improvement, making the provision of the organization’s own security and life safety a challenge. When the time came to upgrade its security and life-safety systems, the management team banked on STAMPSCO Fire & Security, a local fire and security integrator with a proven track record of similar installations. “OBI sought out an experienced installer and modern technology that can provide a much higher level of efficiency, reliability and safety,” says Bill Novak, director of facilities for OBI.

Not a Typical Campus Setting

The greatest challenge facing STAMPSCO was the size of OBI’s operation. OBI facilities are a mix of old and new with offices, blood processing laboratories and other medical support areas.

“It’s not a campus in the true sense. There are a number of different locations, and each could be considered a campus unto itself,” says Rodney Stamps, CEO of STAMPSCO and a NICET-certified fire/life-safety and security specialist.

The project — a near total Honeywell product system integration — entailed a fire alarm, access control, security and video surveillance multiphase installation with all facilities involved in various levels of new construction, renovation and retrofitting.

Briefly, the access control solution features NetAXS (NX4S1) panels, with proximity readers replacing the institute’s card swipe technology. Vista-128FBP control panels for security are able to arm and disarm with the institute’s new proximity cards.

“The integrated solution allows [security personnel], when viewing the access control system, to import video at the same time so if somebody is presenting credentials they can pull video and see a face,” Stamps says.

The system designed for OBI provided an addressable solution that could pinpoint the location of a fire emergency, be monitored remotely, allow for future expansion and provide voice evacuation fire safety for the planned high-rise, plus the laboratory and office areas. To ensure designs were acceptable per local codes and requirements, STAMPSCO met early and often with the local authority having jurisdiction (AHJ).

The specific solution for OBI includes a FocalPoint® graphic workstation, manufactured by Gamewell-FCI, a Honeywell company, showing in-depth fire protection information about any of the facilities in real-time. Detailed graphic layouts of all buildings and fire alarm systems on OBI campuses can be viewed and historically logged by the FocalPoint system.

 “The customer had some unique needs that required having a centralized location for the remote monitoring of its numerous buildings that are scattered around the region. It made the most sense to use the FocalPoint product for monitoring,” says Stamps.

The OBI monitoring station is configured with custom site-specific graphics and connected to the whole network of fire alarm control panels. As new structures and fire alarm system components are added, the system reflects those changes.

“The system’s menus and operations are very intuitive for easy use, which met another need,” says Stamps.

From a single screen, a FocalPoint workstation operator can magnify the facility map using the “zoom in” and “zoom out” feature to view floor plans or identify the location and type of multiple events. The operator can monitor remote site activity and link multimedia (text, audio, video and bitmaps) to any FocalPoint unit. A history log can also be viewed on the same screen as the facility floor plans to help evaluate the sequence of events.

The OBI desktop version of FocalPoint is up and running. As the project progresses, STAMPSCO plans to install the new FocalPoint Mobile wireless tablet PC for monitoring access on-the-go. Working in-tandem with the desktop PCs, these wireless units supply the same real-time information and graphic layouts via a wireless network connection or cellular broadband. This allows facility managers, security personnel and emergency responders to quickly evaluate emergency incidents and make prompt, informed decisions.

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