Last week, the Federal Communications Commission approved a proposal to free up for unlicensed use television "white space" frequencies that advocates say will improve health care providers' ability to serve rural areas, HealthLeaders Media reports.
The white space frequencies are unused airwaves between television channels.
Hocking Valley Community Hospital -- a 25-bed hospital in Ohio -- is the first hospital in the U.S. to test a new technology known as "super Wi-Fi," which uses white space airwaves. In HVCH's project, radios use Wi-Fi technology to boost broadband access for the wireless transmission of data.
The project uses data from:
- First responders;
- Indoor communications; and
- Outdoor video surveillance reports (Commins, HealthLeaders Media, 9/24).
The technology has allowed for easier transfer of data between walls that had impeded earlier efforts to transmit data, InformationWeek reports (Gardner, InformationWeek, 9/24).
HVCH President and CEO LeeAnn Lucas-Helber said white space technology also can assist with the transition to electronic health records. She added that widespread use of super Wi-Fi will depend on cost (HealthLeaders Media, 9/24).