AXIS helps you keep an eye from home on baby in the hospital

AXIS helps you keep an eye from home on baby in the hospital

Mission
The Maas Hospital in Boxmeer (NL) gives young parents the opportunity to keep an eye on their child being cared for in the incubator, over the Internet, thanks to Axis network cameras.

Solution
J&K Automatisering, a company based in Oploo (NL) and a partner of Axis, advised the Maas Hospital to opt for a user-friendly application based on Axis network cameras. This solution is practical and nurse-proof. The monitoring system is simple to operate, with few commands and little opportunity to get things wrong. The incubator unit is divided into sections, and everything in a particular section is shown on the image. The cameras are all connected to a central server, which receives the images and controls access to them.

Result
Babies in the incubator unit cannot be discharged immediately because of illness or premature birth. This solution allows the hospital to give parents the opportunity to see their baby all the same. Parents can also authorize close friends and relatives to see the baby, too. The hospital mentioned a medical reason as well: mothers in the hospital's maternity unit need to be able to see their baby via a laptop, as contact between mother and child speeds up the mother's recovery.

Professional and easy to use
Images are accessed via a single portal, a central point of access to the images taken by the cameras. This gives the system a professional feel. Using a portal also means that information can be displayed on screen as well: for instance, telling viewers that babies are taken out of their cots when the nurses are carrying out nursing or medical procedures. If parents log on while this is happening, rather than looking at an empty cot they will see a message saying “We are looking after your baby.” It's also possible that a technical fault might have occurred, or that the camera might have been switched off for some reason. If that happens, the message “No image is currently available due to a fault or because the camera has been switched off.” For unexpected events the system has an emergency button. By pressing this button the power is cut and the image will disappear.

AXIS 211 Network Camera
The Maas Hospital chose the AXIS 211 Network Camera for the “Keeping an eye on your baby at home” project. This model always produces sharp, clear pictures. A varifocal DC iris lens, with a light sensitivity range from 0.75 to 500,000 lux, ensures that images are sharp even in low light conditions - during the evening and night, for example.

Another advantage of the AXIS 211 is its ability to take power via the midspan: a box that allows the network cable to feed both images and power to the camera. This means that no separate power cable is required. The emergency button is also connected to the midspan and controls the flow of power.

Privacy and storage
An important feature of this project is its matter-offact nature. It's a service that the hospital offers to parents - nothing more and nothing less. That is another reason why images of the newborn babies are never stored. Van Zitteren told us that this was a deliberate choice: “It has to do with privacy rules. If you create video images of someone and want to keep them, you have to comply with all kinds of legal regulations on privacy. The images in the Maas Hospital are changing all the time. The frames refresh every three seconds, and each new image takes the place of the preceding one. This has an added benefit: the cameras don't take up much room in the server's memory.”

Parents can create a photograph of their baby by means of a right-click with their mouse on the moving image. The response has been positive. Van Zitteren continues, “Of course, the system isn‘t designed to replace visiting the baby, but people at home want to know that everything‘ s OK. The images give them the reassurance or confirmation that their baby is in good hands.”

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