The digital transformation has already changed healthcare, from instant patient access to doctors’ notes to new tools for medical diagnoses. Leading-edge technology is deeply integrated into clinic and hospital systems, including electronic health records (EHRs) , telemedicine, billing and scheduling, and communications. To take full advantage of tech-enabled innovations designed for better patient outcomes and greater efficiency, you need internet speed and bandwidth that can keep up with healthcare’s rapid changes.
Designing WiFi for medical offices and dental practices
Your computer network is at the heart of your practice’s operations. It connects your computers to WiFi-enabled medical devices and allows file sharing between them. Fortunately, gone are the days of costly buildouts involving multiple cables snaking throughout workstations, merging in a single location. Quantum Fiber 360 WiFi provides flexible, consistent coverage throughout your business space.
Start planning your medical office WiFi by assessing the area and identifying unique attributes that may influence where you position network hardware and peripheral devices. Pay particular attention to physical obstructions that could impact WiFi coverage, especially in consultation and treatment rooms, offices, waiting rooms, and other high-traffic areas. You can resolve most issues during configuration but may need additional hardware to extend your network’s range.
Next, create a detailed list of the devices that will connect to the network and document the types of applications you’ll be using. This inventory helps to project the load on your network and to determine the minimum bandwidth you need to support your practice. Your list should include:
- Laptop and desktop computers
- Servers and local file storage
- Smart devices such as tablets and phones
- Internet of Things (IoT) devices (e.g., streaming devices, smart speakers, thermostats, and lights)
- Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) devices (e.g., scales, blood pressure devices, and pulse oximeters)
- Specialized devices requiring an Ethernet connection
- Cloud-based applications, such as electronic health records (EHR), picture archiving and communications systems (PACS), and file storage
- Telemedicine platform
Special considerations for WiFi in healthcare
Networks in medical or dental offices share many of the same characteristics as those found in other types of businesses. However, there are additional security and bandwidth requirements you should address.
Network security is a top priority for healthcare providers. Whether you store protected health information (PHI) locally or on the cloud, controlling who can access your network and how that access occurs is critical. A recent cybersecurity report cited in Medical Economics includes these alarming statistics:
- Of the total cyberattacks against healthcare organizations, 12% targeted physician groups in 2022, compared to 2% in 2021.
- Ransomware attacks exploiting access to PHI increased by 13%.
- EHR systems are vulnerable to risks, especially through third-party vendors and business associates.
The consequences of a breach are significant. However, strong authentication, vigilant monitoring, and regularly updating applications and systems can mitigate much of the risk.
EHRs and telemedicine applications consume a lot of bandwidth. Fast upload speeds are significant for EHRs since these systems store data-heavy files, such as imaging studies and videos, that can clog the upstream path.
The FCC recommends a minimum bandwidth of 10 Mbps to support an EHR in a small practice. But you’ll need significantly more bandwidth to optimize your network performance and reduce or eliminate latency when accessing the system. Check with your application vendor for additional information on recommended upload and download speeds.
How to set up a secure WiFi network in a medical office
Fast, consistent internet from Quantum Fiber provides plenty of bandwidth for your practice. With speeds up to 940 Mbps , it can handle the demands of your EHR, telemedicine application, and other business needs. We deliver service with 99.9% reliability based on network uptime or availability, so your network and applications run seamlessly.
Quantum Fiber 360 WiFi makes configuring your network easy. We provide all the necessary hardware, including a router and WiFi pods. Download our app to control all your network settings. It features an intuitive interface that guides you through setting up a mesh network to blanket your office in coverage. You can control access, prioritize bandwidth consumption for critical devices or applications, set up patient guest networks, and implement content controls through the app. Once you set up your network, Quantum Fiber WiFi 360 learns how your network consumes bandwidth and self-optimizes to deliver the best performance possible.
Quantum Fiber provides the flexibility and uninterrupted coverage your small business needs. With powerful Gigspeed, 99.9% reliability, and no annual contracts, it can help any small medical or dental practice deliver the highest patient care.
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