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R&MhealthLine: A new way to fight infections in hospitals

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Shailendra Trivedi, Director Channel Management and Operations, R&M India

Committed to reducing risk of contracting infections in hospitals, R&M, a Swiss company, offers R&MhealthLine antibacterial range of cabling solutions that is the first consistent and complete solution for cabling systems in patient rooms and comparable highly-frequented areas of use in India, says Shailendra Trivedi, Director Channel Management and Operations, R&M India, in an interview with Arpit Gupta of Elets News Network (ENN). Excerpts:

What is the demand scenario of antibacterial cabling solutions in the Indian healthcare industry? What led you launch this product?

On its own, a reliable network is not enough, when there is a risk of cross-contamination between patients due to contact with cables and outlets. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), around 16 million people die every year from infections contracted in hospitals.

R&M wants to make a contribution to reducing risks of this kind and to promoting health in clinics. The latest development is the R&MhealthLine antibacterial range. This is the first consistent and complete solution for cabling systems in patient rooms and comparable, highly-frequented areas of use. Clinics can extend their IT risk management to the field of hygiene by installing R&MhealthLine products.

Please tell us about the key features of the product.

As an independent Swiss cabling specialist with internationally recognised expertise in the healthcare market, R&M sets standards for the modern clinic infrastructure. In dozens of projects, R&M has acquired expertise enabling the unique needs and requirements of medical facilities to be met both convincingly and comprehensively.

R&M maintains a programme with experienced planners and qualified installers as project partners to supply a future-proof cabling infrastructure. Only the best is good enough for healthcare. That is why R&M is the strongest partner for healthcare cabling.

The R&MhealthLine range offers the same installation and user friendliness as standard products and fits into the R&Mfreenet range. In particular, the product line includes the following:

  • Outlets with RJ45 sockets for local data and communications networks
  • Shutters from the R&M security system
  • Shielded Cat.6A and unshielded Cat.6 patch cords for connecting computers, medical devices, telephones, call systems, etc.

How can cables reduce the risk of infections in healthcare institutions? What are the key benefits hospitals and patients can draw from it?

Special additives are permanently incorporated into the plastic materials to inhibit the growth of bacteria and reduce the risk of cross contamination. All parts of the cabling that are accessible to patients have antibacterial properties tested in accordance to ISO 22196. This test demonstrates the protection against the two bacterial strains, Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli trough cabling located near the patient’s bed. This can assist in reducing the potential of cross contamination of disease causing bacteria.

Given the low-level of awareness about such products in India, how will R&M promote these cabling solutions?

Choosing cabling solutions from R&M gives clinics a secure and durable foundation for their IT infrastructure. Healthcare cabling from R&M makes a crucial contribution to ensuring the best possible medical care and long-term operational reliability for the entire hospital. Specific cabling solutions from R&M for the healthcare sector solve concrete problems found in a clinical environment. Certified high-end technology and continuous quality assurance help ensure the professional, flexible and profitable performance of medical tasks.

Even clinic areas with harsh and damp ambient conditions or with rigorous hygiene requirements (cleaning) can be reliably connected to the network using the resilient R&M solutions for protection classes IP54 and IP67. Areas of use are laboratories and operating rooms, ambulances, supply stations for gases, fluids and refrigerants, or outdoors with access control and video monitoring.

The Splash Line retrofitable rubber grommet provides protection against splashing water and dust. It makes a simple RJ45 connector into a protection class IP54 connection. Splash Line can withstand cleaning agents and disinfectants. The IP67 type 6 plastic grommet ensures even higher protection. It protects connectors against mechanical loads such as shocks and impacts. Grid clamps prevent connectors and cables from being pulled out in error. It is especially suitable for movable equipment. The IP67 type 6 grommet is particularly suitable for waterproof connection of mobile devices to LAN sockets using cables.

What are the key challenges you see in terms of adoption of such solutions by healthcare facilities?

We don’t see any challenges as such because the benefits are there for everyone to see. R&M provides platforms that are adaptable and future-proof. Previous investments retain their value.

The healthcare industry requires these kinds of solutions and R&M is making it available to them. R&M looks to build a partnership, supporting healthcare projects from start to finish, i.e., from the design of the building network, via installation, through to ongoing operations.

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