AV systems at Great Ormond Street

The Morgan Stanley building is the latest phase of the Great Ormond Street redevelopment to be completed.

The telemedicine control room in the new Morgan Stanley building.

The entire system is managed by state-of-the-art image transmission and control equipment built by Video South.

As with the previous two phases, Video South has provided design and installation of groundbreaking audio-visual systems in clinical areas.

Our systems now feature in all 12 operating theatres, two catheter labs and the MRI/fluoro hybrid. These connect with the Weston Lecture room, the cardiac conference/MDM room, the new seminar room and with the 300-seat Kennedy lecture theatre at the Institute of Child Health, which Video South installed when it was built.

The new project in the Morgan Stanley building involves three operating theatres used for cardiac and neurosurgery, and a state-of-the-art hybrid fluoro lab and operating theatre.

Video South helped to design the audio-visual, monitoring and conferencing systems – something which was started two years before the actual building programme got under way. We worked with the GOS project team to coordinate with BAM, the building contractor, as well as other key providers of equipment in the clinical rooms. These included Starkstrom (for the operating lamps with cameras), Brandon (pendants for connections and monitors), and also Toshiba (the provider of fluoroscopy in the hybrid).

All imaging components of these systems, as well as mobile camera and anaesthetic monitoring, were brought together in a single system for control and monitoring of all images in the theatres. The brief given to Video South was to design a system comprising three main sub-systems:

Any image in a theatre to be available on any monitor: Each theatre is equipped with three ceiling pendants, each supporting two monitors on arms that rotate and can be adjusted for height. These monitors allow any team member in theatre to be shown a clear view of the image they require. The image can be chosen by means of a touch screen in the surgeon’s panel. Any image can be shown on any of the monitors.

This is true, even when the image sources are quite different in nature. The technical design takes all images produced to a distribution hub in the local telemedicine room. There, all images are scaled to the highest available resolution (1920 x 1200) and then transmitted back to selected monitors in theatres. The touch screen also has two preset buttons so that a preferred arrangement of images on all six monitors can be set up at a single press.

Telemedicine room to be able to monitor images with two-way sound: The local monitoring room is equipped with three large LCD panels which are full HD resolution. The first two of these can show two images each. So viewers can choose any four images from any of the theatres and speak at will to a theatre, as well as listening to the surgical team. The third monitor is a compilation of up to four images from one theatre and this is the coordinated transmission that is then used for links outside the building. This room is a viewing location and monitoring centre for expert visitors to the facility who wish to participate in a procedure demonstration without entering the theatre.

Transmission to teaching and conferencing: The touch panels in other rooms at Great Ormond Street can select a theatre in MSB to view and, once connected, they can then compose a multi-image screen of selected pictures from that theatre. These on-campus seminar rooms and lecture theatres receive lossless quality HD video and have immediate high-quality, two-way audio with the demonstration team. This has been true for many years at GOS, but these theatres, especially the hybrid, are state-of-the-art function and quality. When a conference is in progress, the telemedicine room can view the proceedings, be party to the two-way audio and contribute to the session.

A Cisco codec also allows the compiled multi-image and two-way audio to be used all over the GOS IP network and could be connected outside GOS on demand.

The system is used by staff every day and also provides an expert teaching and conferencing infrastructure. The ‘any image to any monitor’ system is probably the most advanced installation of its kind, and also features a failsafe system for vital images within each theatre. The system has been in full service since May 2012.