The Hux Cancer Center is one of four existing facilities retrofitted with Johnson Controls IFC2-3030 alarm system and P2000 security system.

Located in Terre Haute, Ind., Union Hospital is the largest provider of health services between Indianapolis and St. Louis. The health care system has been providing care to the region since it began in 1892. Most recently, the hospital embarked on the construction of a new five-story, 575,000-square-foot facility — the largest construction project in Terre Haute history.

The construction phase created an opportunity for the hospital to make enhanced system integrations within and across buildings. From the start of the construction process, hospital executives wished to employ enhanced building system integrations to bring operational and fiscal efficiencies.

Ensuring the safety and security of the hospital’s patients, visitors, physicians, staff and vendors was a top priority. The new construction brought the opportunity to install integrated fire and security systems within the new building, as well as the retrofit of security and fire systems within the four existing buildings. The hospital implemented systems integrations across all buildings campus-wide, working with long-term partner Johnson Controls, with headquarters in Milwaukee, Wis., to install and integrate cutting-edge technology solutions.

The comfort and convenience of patients was a focus for the expansion project at Union Hospital. The facility includes large private rooms, improved parking and more convenient patient access. While new, comfortable environments are clear to the naked eye, there are also less obvious measures that were taken to make the new healthcare building safe and secure.

Bridging the fire and security solution between the new facility and the four existing buildings at the hospital required a common standards-based communications platform to integrate the security technologies campus-wide. All five buildings that are part of the campus now feature a Johnson Controls IFC2-3030 fire alarm system and P2000 security management system. The P2000 system is integrated with Internet Protocol (IP) card readers to monitor and control more than 30 doors across the hospital’s campus.

Further integrations enhance operational procedures for quick, informed decision-making capabilities in the case of a security event, such as a broken window or a fire. For example, hospital staff can now monitor activity through the Johnson Controls Metasys® building management system to determine the best course of action when a fire alarm is triggered.

Protecting Sensitive Materials

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Union Hospital has continuously improved and expanded its services since 1982 to provide quality care and significant economic impact to the residents of west central Indiana and eastern Illinois.

As with any healthcare campus, Union Hospital brought security challenges specific to the healthcare industry. Providing a safe and secure environment for people was important, but protecting physical property was also a consideration.

For example, the hospital needed to be able to secure prescription drug drawers in the new pharmacy. To meet this need, the systems integrator turned to the same IP door card readers operating at the doors and entrances. These card readers were installed and integrated with the P2000 system to monitor and control access to 36 prescription drug drawers. With the swipe of a card, authorized personnel can now dispense medicines as needed.

Ensuring Patient Comfort

Hospital executives switched from a wired approach to a wireless one after experiencing the operation of the Johnson Controls Metasys® building management system and wireless temperature controls first hand. This decision alone saved more than $50,000 in construction costs. In addition to the new hospital, the Metasys system is used to monitor and control HVAC systems and equipment in the other facilities including the main hospital, professional office, cancer center, surgery center, ambulatory surgery, as well as the hospital’s second location in Clinton, Ind.

The wireless building controls increased efficiencies for the hospital in a number of ways. Going wireless eliminated the need for conduit stub-ups for temperature controls and the need to pull the communications bus. Because the wireless platform also eliminated the need to install room thermostat rough-ins and BACnet communication wiring for 400 patient rooms, the construction team could better meet other project deadlines.

Systems integration was paramount for hospital executives who sought to make the best use of existing building systems that were already in place. “I was very pleased to see that the fire alarm system could be integrated with the expanded Metasys system,” said Dave Snapp, director of construction development for Union Hospital. “It brings added value to the Metasys system we already had in place while giving us the ability to monitor and control systems from a single location.” 

The Metasys system is maintained by Johnson Controls under a planned service agreement. The service agreement includes preventative maintenance on the variable air volume boxes, air handlers and YORK chillers. The goal is to continuously fine-tune the system and implement energy efficient strategies to optimize HVAC equipment performance and reduce operational costs. This provides the hospital with peace of mind, as well as costs savings.

Future Security Integrations

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The P2000 security system is used to monitor and control prescription drug drawers, with the swipe of a card, at the new hospital.

Union Hospital now has the future-ready security technologies in place to allow for additional integrations over time. The access control system is continually being upgraded campus-wide, including interface with the digital video recording system and surveillance cameras. Currently, the hospital is also a beta test site for Johnson Controls’ new power-over-Ethernet card readers.

The integrated technology at Union Hospital supports the hospital’s goals for compassionate, efficient and high-quality patient care services, in a safe and secure environment with the bonus of integrated energy efficient HVAC systems. Union Hospital is positioned with the cutting-edge technology to upgrade security systems seamlessly over time, saving money and creating efficient building management operations.