The Mitel network has much improved the flexibility of our operations. It has helped make sure that staff can update patient notes and make telephone calls at any of our sites and our service users receive uninterrupted telephony.
Tim Mullan, IP Telephony Systems Lead at 2gether NHS Foundation Trust
2gether NHS Foundation Trust provides mental and social health care services across Gloucestershire and Herefordshire.
The specialist Trust employs over 2,000 people and delivers services to a combined population of 761,000, spanning over nearly 1900 square miles. At any one time, 2gether helps care and support over 12,000 individuals.
The Trust’s mixed system network was outdated, expensive to run and did not provide enough operational flexibility. Furthermore, with staff – mostly nurses and occupational therapists – working across 30 sites spread throughout the region, call expenditure was significantly high.
Because Gloucester Health Community already had a Wide Area Network (WAN) in place covering the whole region, the Trust knew that it could deploy IP telephony over this network to achieve substantial cost efficiencies.
Being part of the NHS, the Trust places a large emphasis on patient access to psychological support and therapy through its ‘Let’s Talk’ service for depression and anxiety; and its ‘Crisis and Home Resolutions Team’ which provides round-the-clock support to service users through a Freephone number. It therefore required a telephony solution that would enable it to effectively manage calls and to make sure that the support provided by the Trust was easily accessible.
Daisy recommended that the Trust implement a Mitel 3300 network over the existing WAN, which comprised 2,800 IP licenses, multiple platforms and applications. This would enable the Trust to reduce expenditure by providing free calls between all of its locations, while at the same time providing staff with the flexibility to move freely between sites.
Because the Mitel solution uses the existing WAN, the infrastructure has been designed with resiliency in mind, so that in the event of a data circuit failing, there is no impact on the Trust’s telecommunications services.
The Trust’s Crisis Team uses Mitel’s NuPoint Call Director feature – a web-based interface used to design advanced call processing and scheduled call routing which directs calls to the appropriate place or recipient. The feature further enhances patient access to the different types/levels of support available.
As a result of linking all of its sites to the existing WAN and carrying voice calls over IP, the Trust is experiencing considerable cost savings which it is able to put back into further enhancing service provision.
In addition to cost savings, the Trust’s staff now have a solution that suits them. Tim Mullan, IP Telephony Systems Lead at 2gether NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Mitel network has much improved the flexibility of our operations. It has helped make sure that staff can update patient notes and make telephone calls at any of our sites and our service users receive uninterrupted telephony.”
Speaking about the installation, Tim said: “We have worked hard with the Daisy team to overcome any issues along the way to implement a simple yet robust solution. The approach continues to help us advance the evolving needs of an increasingly mobile community-based workforce.”