The operating systems used are Microsoft Windows (Windows 2000 and Windows XP Professional) and the Macintosh Operating System to avoid a sense of monopoly and hence providing a choice for the users, depending on which system they are more familiar with or which one better serves their needs. For example, Apple Macintosh is preferred over IBM computers by some physicians for research purposes and further education in the medical field.
The functionality of computers is extended from just being a set of relational databases because it can be maximized further to the benefit of both the hospital and the patients. Since all areas of the hospital are equipped with computers that have ready access to the Internet, the inter-connectivity is taken advantage of in many ways. Networks are established within the workplace to have an easier access to information in and out of the company. Cisco router is used for broad infrastructure and the Nortel network for remote access. For patient documentation from multi-disciplinary venues, the UNIX server and the Sunrise Clinical Manager are used. All patients and vendors have can have unlimited access to the Guest Wireless network through a code that can be obtained after signing up with the IT Department.
Although previously used mostly in business establishments and big hotels, audio/video conferencing is also presently being provided by our hospital. In one instance, the daughter of one of our female patients was getting married in another state. Unfortunately, her mother was hospitalized and was therefore unable to attend the ceremony. Knowing that this was one occasion the mother would not want to miss, the system was set up in her room where she could view the wedding and hear what was going on. At the same time, the bride and groom could see and hear her. The patient even dressed up for the occasion while the hospital staff provided flowers and the hospitals communication department took charge of the hook-up.
Furthermore, the hospital has a secured website that allows virtual private remote access. The hospital employees can easily access a site to view their pays tubs. For the public, a site provides information on the hospitals roster of doctors and their specializations, the types of health services available including outpatient services, and general information about the hospital.
In addition to all these, the hospital has two (2) patient channels from which they could view chapel services or listen to soft music while viewing scenes that allows meditation, prayer or just plain mental relaxation. These are exclusively for in-patients use and are not available to the public outside the hospital.
The hospital is also a teaching facility for would-be doctors and nurses but at present, it does not fully provide distance education. It has links to the Medical Library for the use of its students and the hospital personnel, but it does not have computer-based academic programs that provide full education.
Essentially, with the advent of technology, the hospital has become more than just a place where sick people go for treatment. It has also become a sanctuary for the sick where they could listen to soothing music or take part in religious services without having to leave their hospital bed.