The Outer Banks Hospital recently upgraded their phone system resulting in unparalleled access to resources system wide with University Health Systems. Although part of future plans, the project was advanced after an unexpected failure of the phone computer system occurred on January 26, 2011. Thanks to the integrated efforts of hospital staff and CenturyLink’s technicians, a temporary phone system was installed rapidly to all critical patient areas. The new phone system was installed in early April.

The temporary solution remained in place until a permanent solution, a Cisco Unified Communications Voice over IP system, was installed on April 8, 2011. This new state of the art system not only handles everything the previous system performed, but enhances the communications within the hospital, the capabilities within the hospital, and its affiliate offices.

“Patient safety is our top priority and communication, including by phone, is crucial to providing safe care,” stated Jeffrey N. Sackrison, FACHE, Interim President at The Outer Banks Hospital.  “Thankfully we have an emergency operations plan that addresses alternative communications methods. That plan was quickly placed into operation and CenturyLink was able to respond quickly. The new system improves our ability to communicate system-wide.”

Thankfully when the hospital’s phone system failed, CenturyLink’s team of technicians and engineers worked to create a plan to bring critical phone and fax services back into service the same day. It was no easy feat to accomplish. A project of this scope normally takes weeks to engineer and build. But they were able to bring in a temporary phone system and other equipment to get 64 phone lines and 20 fax lines running within hours. CenturyLink’s team of technicians were back the next day to ensure all lines were programmed and operating to the hospital’s specifications.

The temporary system remained in place while the hospital worked with CenturyLink to engineer a seamless transition to the new phone system.

“CenturyLink is proud to be the communications provider for The Outer Banks Hospital, and we realize how important voice and data capabilities are to the hospital and its patients” said Kevin McCarter, CenturyLink’s vice-president of central and eastern North Carolina. “I am pleased with our teams’ ability to design, create, and install a solution to get hospital operations back up and running within a matter of hours. The new system enhances their communication with the other University Health System affiliates that have converted to the new voice over IP network.” continued McCarter.