Case Study

Wexham Park

Wexham Park Hospital near Slough is a typical example of how the flexibility offered by wireless nurse call systems can help patient services to adapt more quickly and easily to change. A system that provides complete support for managers, front line carers and patients.

Historically, the hospital had used several systems across it’s estate, including a mix of hard wired and wireless products, and had taken a strategic decision to move towards single system supply as part of upgrade and replacement projects.

For some of the older systems in the hospital, accessing replacement parts was becoming more difficult and, while the hospital’s in-house maintenance teams could usually manage any repairs with what they had, longer term maintenance looked set to be an issue.

Continuity of supplier was very important to the estates team when considering which system to specify going forward, but flexibility was equally essential. A spokesperson for Wexham Park Hospital commented, “Any capital investment programme must consider future needs to ensure that the true whole life costs are assessed as part of long term planning. Our investment in a new, hospital-wide nurse call system is part of an ongoing plan but the aim is to install a system that will grow and adapt with the hospital well beyond that period, while providing a system that is easy to operate for both staff and patients and adds value to the management team with up-to-date and easy to access data.”

any capital investment programme must consider future needs... the aim is to install a system that will grow and adapt with the hospital

A Rolling Programme

The hospital was keen to adopt a wireless system. Following a tender process, Courtney Thorne’s 08 wireless nurse call system was selected for the hospital’s Paragon Suite and A&E department, and it has since been installed into 19 wards and departments over the past 11 years, including the extended A&E department, delivering a rolling programme of nurse call improvements and standardisation.

John Polhill from Courtney Thorne explained: “One of the key requirements that prompted Wexham Park to specify a wireless system was the need to create escalation areas and adapt certain areas of the hospital for winter pressure patient management.

“The Courtney Thorne 08 wireless nurse call provides this flexibility and means the hospital has a system that can be reprogrammed quickly and easily for temporary adjustments to hospital layout as well as for permanent changes.”

The wireless system has given Wexham Park flexibility both during and after installation. The fact that the wireless installation can be completed in just a few days and at a late stage in a ward refurbishment means that last-minute changes to layout can be accommodated. So, while decisions about the site of any electrical sockets needed to be made at first fix, installation and programming of the nurse call system could be done after second fix.

There remain 12 more wards to install at Wexham Park, which will be  completed within the five-year plan. From there, any further changes will simply involve reprogramming the  existing system to adapt to the new layout.

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