Evolution, the integrated security and fire solutions business, is helping to improve the security of patients, visitors, and staff at one of Scotland’s largest teaching hospitals due to a sophisticated, fibre optic-based access control technology.

Evolution worked with the team at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (RIE), a major acute teaching hospital, to upgrade the cabling infrastructure to fibre optic as a more reliable way of ensuring access for the hospital’s thousands of pass-holders.

The new card-based access system has now been installed to manage some 227 doors throughout the RIE, further improving the hospital’s security and reducing the need and cost of unnecessary maintenance. The cards are proximity readers and used at controlled doors, while each card also contains a photograph, name, and department—acting as an identity card as well.

Scott Lawson, Operations Manager at RIE, says the new system is reliable, operationally sound, and easy to use: “The system has to manage the demands for access of the 10,000-strong footfall that the hospital experiences daily, and it consistently performs well across the hospital’s entire estate,” he says.

RIE has over 4,000 employees as well as 400 students from the University of Edinburgh, and receives more than 115,000 patients each year at its A&E department alone.

Along with system reliability, the hospital also demanded flexibility, both in the system and in the installation: “The hospital regularly sees changes of purpose for buildings and the requirements for access can alter substantially,” he explains. “With the new system, changes can be quickly and easily accommodated; the Evolution solution allows operators to programme and dispense new passes from an easy-to-use portal.”

John Baillie, Area Sales Manager at Evolution, says the installation phase was meticulously planned: “It was essential for the hospital to remain open throughout and with minimum disruption,” he explains. “We therefore worked closely with each department to support its needs while never sacrificing security. Our attention to detail in the planning meant the project ran very efficiently.”

For further information visit www.evolutionsecurity.co.uk