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Community Member

Wireless LAN in a Nursing Home

I have no experience in wireless LANs but have an opportunity to do some work for a nursing home, part of which would seem to benefit from using wireless. What I'm trying to find out is the required hardware components.

The measurements of the building where the network is required are yet unknown to me, but the Nursing Home houses about 350 residents on three floors. They currently have an ethernet LAN with about 30 connected workstations scattered among the three floors.

Nurses could benefit from having handheld devices they could use to access the LAN from anywhere in the building. These handheld devices may be Compaq iPAQs. What sort of access points and other hardware would be required?

Thanks in advance for any information?

3 REPLIES
Community Member

Re: Wireless LAN in a Nursing Home

Hi Joe,

I am the Wireless Network Engineer for UNC Healthcare in Chapel Hill, NC and I am testing exactly what you are trying to do. I personally like the Air-AP352E2R-K9 Aironet access points. These APs can use various antennas to extend the signal of your AP. I recently installed 6 new APs in our new hospital and plan to provide coverage for the entire hospital. The K9 unit may be overkill for the nursing home but the coverage is excellent when you use the Air-ANT-1728 antennas. The Compaq iPAQs are pretty reliable thus far but I have not put them into production yet. If you plan to allow users to access the AP via PCs, you will obviously need wireless NICs. Cisco makes both PCMCIA and PCI NICs. I would higly recommend performing a site survey prior to purchasing all your hardware. You wont be well liked by the nurses if their hardware looses connection while roaming...

Eric Schuller

Community Member

Re: Wireless LAN in a Nursing Home

Thanks so much. It's good to hear that someone has already been down the same path. Your hardware advice is just what I was looking for. I'll take your advice and get a site survey then let you know how it turns outs.

Did you have Cisco do the site survey?

Community Member

Re: Wireless LAN in a Nursing Home

Hi Joe,

I did my own site survey. I felt I was qualified since I used to work for Cisco's Mobile Wireless Group as a contractor and I worked on one of the first deployments of Aironet on the RTP campus. However, I would not recommend doing this for the first time on your own. Contact your Cisco reseller to see who is your locally certified wireless guru.

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