Inside Xentry Systems’ Ohio State Medical Center Solution

Xentry Systems Integration installed a $3.3 million nurse-call/life safety and paging system at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center’s new James Tower cancer hospital and research facility.

February’s annual Business Issue of Security Sales & Integration features my cover story on Xentry Systems Integration. I spent a couple of days with executive leadership of the business spun off last year by access control manufacturer Matrix Systems.

One of the most interesting experiences was touring Ohio State University (OSU) Wexner Medical Center’s new James Tower cancer hospital and research facility. There I was taken for a walkthrough of the nurse-call and communications project Xentry had just completed. I had never been to that part of the country before (Columbus, Ohio) and just setting foot on the campus and seeing the house that Woody (Hayes, the legendary college football coach) built was a kick. And right before the Buckeyes beat Oregon in the College Football Playoff championship too!

The largest construction project in OSU history, the 1.1 million-square-foot James Tower is a state-of-the-art facility that cost more than $1 billion to construct ― and it looked like all of that. Accompanied by Xentry Systems Vice President of Sales Andre Greco, Healthcare Programs Manager Jesse Vroman and Account Executive Mike Balle, I received a comprehensive look at the integrator’s skilled handiwork as well as that of several other contractors also involved. The scope of the $3.3 million project ― which began in January 2014 and took almost a year to complete ― was to create a building-wide, integrated nurse-call/life-safety and paging system. All the work had to satisfy state building and national life-safety codes, UL1069, and Joint Commission and OSU standards.

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“The project was a new build construction funded by OSU with the intent to create the most technologically advanced critical cancer care hospital in the United States,” Balle told me. “The first scope of work was to provide, install and integrate to a performance spec provided by the university. The second scope of work was to provide, install and integrate a fully functioning paging system to meet the criteria set forth in a performance spec. Consulting, risk assessment and design responsibilities were handled by the general contractor. The project was coordinated through our professional team of engineers, project managers and sales personnel.”

In addition to the 21-story facility itself, one of the most unique aspects of the installation is the inclusion of 465 guaranteed VoIP talk paths for critical patient alarms, which removes the possibility of a busy signal or dropped call anywhere in the facility. Vroman explained to me how the application was groundbreaking from both the perspective of the integrator and the manufacturer (Ascom). The solution combines three different product lines to successfully accomplish the intended outcome, which he says would have required three additional companies to achieve had Xentry not worked its integration wizardry.

“A fully functioning system was delivered,” says Vroman. “We have received positive feedback from the owner, and we continue to add additional functionality and customization to the system per the owner’s request.”

Balle told me Xentry Systems provides many other solutions and services to OSU, with one of the more unusual ones using video analytics to help the baseball team improve its hitting technique. After seeing the impressive James Tower results firsthand, I can attest to the Buckeyes’ winning ways extending far beyond the football field. Be sure to view the slideshow to see for yourself.

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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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