Date Archives May 2015

A Chicago High School Turns the Classroom Interactive

Camelot Education’s Chicago Excel Academy specializes in helping at-risk students earn their credits for high school graduation. To foster student engagement with subject lessons, the school wanted interactive SMART Boards in its classrooms. AVI-SPL provided and implemented those SMART Boards, and trained teachers how to use them. Watch the video below to find out why Excel was so excited about the interactive displays and how the students reacted.



Contact AVI-SPL at or 866-559-8197 to get the collaboration tools that are right for your school.

Webinar, May 28: “Sound Matters,” by Biamp

This Thurs., May 28 at 1 p.m. EST, join us for “Sound Matters” a webinar that explores the importance of sound as it relates to performance in communication environments (meeting rooms, conferencing spaces, classrooms, training rooms, etc.). Biamp’s Mike Bucklin will review what sound is, the differences between hearing and listening, how sound affects us; and how acoustics, noise, and microphone placement are interrelated with regard to intelligibility. He’ll also provide an update on Biamp’s training offerings, including their new VoIP certification training.

Register for “Sound Matters” >

About the presenter

Mike Bucklin manages Biamp Systems’ operations in Southern California and Southern Nevada. Prior to joining Biamp, Mike spent 13 years in Consulting and Integration bringing with him a wealth of direct experience in the integration and design of audiovisual systems.

Webinar Recording: AVI-SPL’s Virtual Meeting Room

During this webinar, you’ll learn about the benefits of AVI-SPL’s Virtual Meeting Room services, including the ability for users to connect anytime, anywhere, and over any device with one another. You’ll also gain insight into the workplace changes that are making VMR services attractive to companies. This webinar also will look at the Polycom version of AVI-SPL’s VMR offerings.

Review the recording: “Anytime, Anywhere, Any Device: the Virtual Meeting Room.”

Overcoming Internal Challenges to Video Use in Healthcare Organizations

The use of video in the healthcare industry has proven to be enormously beneficial in the areas of improved patient care, shorter hospital stays, reduced costs, and enhanced staff communication, collaboration, and efficiency. Although an increasing number of organizations now recognize these benefits, overall adoption of video in healthcare has been slow.

Here are three major obstacles to expansion of video in the healthcare world and what can be done to overcome them.

HIPAA Issues

A key concern for healthcare organizations when considering implementing video is the gray area surrounding HIPAA laws. When it comes to video conferencing and patient data, some institutions have been reluctant to adopt because they are worried about data security. Some early technologies lacked the data encryption required by HIPAA when transmitting patient data via video.

This is less of an issue now because of advances in data transmission security. Most networks transmitting video today have some level of encryption that ensures the privacy of patient information.

Equipment Expense

Video equipment can represent a significant capital expense and that might be difficult to work into the ever-shrinking budgets of most healthcare organizations. It’s been hard to quantify a tangible return on investment to justify the purchase.

This is changing, however, as organizations begin to see real savings through the use of video for telemedicine. This technology allows institutions to open up a video conferencing channel that allows physicians to virtually meet with patients and use tools to transfer data and conduct complete examinations. This enables the organization to charge for the “visit,” which increases the revenue stream to help pay for the equipment and provides a compelling ROI justification.

IT Bandwidth and Support

Video adds another layer of complexity to the technology landscape, and IT groups haven’t been eager to manage the additional requirement. In many instances, the healthcare facilities are getting pushback from their own IT departments.

This is another objection that is fading as cost and availability of bandwidth declines. Another way to overcome this barrier is by including the IT operations staff early in the conversations surrounding the implementation of video technology. This will help them better understand the technology and allow them to offer input on how best to manage it. If the in-house staff doesn’t have the resources to absorb the additional workload, engaging a third-party, managed services partner can be a viable, cost-effective solution.

Although barriers to widespread adoption of video in the healthcare industry still exist, the benefits of improved care and reduced costs are becoming too extensive to ignore. As the technology continues to evolve and organizations become more adept at using it, video will continue to become an integral component of the healthcare landscape.

Get help with these challenges by contacting the video collaboration experts at AVI-SPL,

7 Ways Video is Being Used to Improve Healthcare

This blog post comes courtesy of Debra Blanco, AVI-SPL sales manager.

In the world of healthcare, organizations of all types and sizes are faced with the challenge to improve patient care while increasing profit margins. These two goals may appear to be at odds, but many institutions are discovering they can do both by adopting video collaboration.

Here are seven ways video is being deployed to benefit healthcare organizations.

1. Telemedicine

Telemedicine began 40 years ago as a way to reach patients in remote areas; today it is fast becoming integral to many aspects of the healthcare industry. Telemedicine opens a video channel so that the patient and physician can interact face to face even though they are in separate locations.

Telemedicine also enables the use of diagnostic tools like stethoscopes, derma scopes, and general exam cameras so that images can be transmitted to a consulting physician. Using this technology, physicians can not only provide care to more patients, but organizations can also charge for the doctor’s “visit” just like they do for one that was conducted in-person.

2. Physician Consults

Video has proven valuable when two or more doctors need to meet to discuss a patient’s care plan. It could be a situation where a small rural hospital has a contract with a larger institution for specialty consults – like oncology for example. This interaction can be from a desktop to a mobile device without the need for the physician to be in a conference room. This is particularly beneficial in helping to make efficient use of time for doctors who are constantly on the move.

3. Home Healthcare

There are a number of video solutions that can be used for home healthcare needs. These units are usually connected via broadband and can be linked to diagnostic tools like blood pressure cuffs. When a patient uses the device, the results are transmitted to her physician for evaluation.

4. Patient Care Solutions

This is display technology that resides in the patient’s room in the hospital either on the wall or from a swing arm by the bed. The video component is used for patients to Skype friends and relatives or for doctors to conduct a consult with a physician from another hospital while in the patient’s room. Doctors can also use these units to do their charting or to pull up diagnostic images from a central server.

5. Public Health Education

Many states are using video to share information that benefits the general population. For example, Florida is using the technology to provide public training classes for tobacco use cessation. They have 90 classrooms in health departments throughout the state to deliver these classes.  The state is also using video to monitor tuberculosis patients to ensure they are taking their medication on time.

6. Medical Staff Education

Some larger healthcare organizations will bring a trainer into one of their hospitals and have people from their other facilities attend by video. This eliminates travel costs as well as the expense of using multiple trainers throughout their system.

Some teaching hospitals use video to set up a Grand Rounds Room to allow physicians to complete their patient rounds remotely. This is where a doctor will discuss a patient history with a number of interns during their regular patient hospital visits. With video, the doctor can meet the patient alone while the interns tune in from another room. This eliminates the discomfort the patient may feel when having to face a group of doctors crowded around the bed.

7. Correctional Health Services

Video is quickly being adopted by governments for physician “visits” to inmates at correctional institutions. Psychologists or psychiatrists can be at great risk when physically meeting with inmates in small rooms at the facility. Using video, the patient is ushered into a room with a secure system and uses a handset to have a confidential behavioral health meeting with the physician. Not only does it provide more security and safety for the doctor, it is less expensive than an in-person visit.

For more information on how video solutions can benefit your healthcare organization or if you need assistance with a planned project, email our experts at