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SAFETY & SECURITY


MANABU KAWABE, TAKASHI KANO – DEPARTMENT OF BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING, FACULTY OF HEALTH AND MEDICAL CARE, SAITAMA MEDICAL UNIVERSITY, SUEDA TAKATOSHI TECHNOLOGY CENTER – TAISEI CORPORATION


Managing staff location using Smartphones


Most methods used to detect a position indoors require the installation of multiple antennas. These detect the position of a person or object with an electronic tag which transmits radio waves when the tag enters the reception area of an antenna. The authors set out to find a better solution.


With position detectors which use only radio waves, in some cases, if a radio wave transmissive material is used as the building material that partitions adjoining rooms in the building, radio waves transmitted from the tags can reach adjoining rooms as well, resulting in inaccurate position detection. Hospitals are designed with various


room sizes – such as examination rooms and patient rooms – so position detection in hospitals using only radio waves is thought to be difficult. The authors decided to build a


location management system that uses a hybrid position detection method, based on sound waves and radio waves. In this system, smartphones are used instead of the electronic tags. Smartphones can be used not only for telephone calls, but also for operating work support applications utilising data communication functions.


Overview of the system A system overview is shown in Figure 1. Sound wave transmitters and radio wave transmitters are attached to the ceilings of various rooms within the hospital building, including hallways and patient rooms. When a person carrying a smartphone passes beneath the transmitter, radio wave signals are received by a Bluetooth antenna built into the smartphone, and sound wave signals are received by the internal microphone of a smartphone. When the smartphone receives a signal from the transmitter, ‘smartphone terminal number,’ ‘transmitter number,’ and ‘radio wave strength if a radio wave is used’ are transmitted to a cloud server through a carrier network circuit. A location


management computer 38 Cloud server Hospital building


Sound wave transmitters


Radio wave transmitters (beacon)


Internet Client


Smartphone Carrier network


•Smartphone terminal number


Bluetooth microphone Internal


•Transmitter number


•Radiowave strength


Location


management computer


Figure 1: Overview of the location management system.


installed within the hospital periodically acquires data updated by the cloud server, deletes unnecessary data, and converts the data into a movement history, and thereby estimates the current position. The movement histories and current positions of medical staff carrying smartphones are disclosed using a web browser on a client computer. Furthermore, because a carrier network is used for data communication, there is no need to


Manabu Kawabe


Manabu Kawabe is a Clinical Engineering Technologist at Saitama Medical


University. Previously, he worked as a technologist of ‘blood purification


therapy’ and ‘management of medical equipment’ at the Saitama Medical University hospital. He currently teaches


about the safety management of medical equipment and haemodialysis apparatus.


construct a network within the hospital, and the location management system can be easily used by merely installing the location management application on a smartphone and registering the terminal number with the location management computer.


Characteristics As the characteristics of the sound wave transmitters and radio wave transmitters used to build the system, mean that radio waves are ‘suitable for detecting positions in large spaces’ (Fig. 2a) and the sound waves are ‘suitable for detecting the position in the narrow space of a hospital room because the sound waves do not pass through building materials’ (Fig. 2b). Based on these types of characteristics, the position detection system is constructed by installing radio wave transmitters in relatively large spaces, such as hallways and waiting rooms and installing sound wave transmitters at doorways to narrow rooms.


IFHE DIGEST 2017


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