BlackBerry-Based WIC Pager Pilot Program at Children’s Hospital


Currently, many hospitals use an outdated pager system to get in touch with doctors on call. This solution does not allow admins to know whether the message was received and relies on a code system that doesn’t provide much detail as to the nature of the page. Wallace Wireless have a BlackBerry-based solution that brings pager like services to BlackBerry users. The system is in the process of being piloted at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), and if it’s successful could set a new standard for healthcare professionals.

WIC Pager is a really interesting solution that features:

One-click call back: If the pager alert includes a phone number, WIC Pager can initiate a call back with a single click.
WIC Pager inbox on the BlackBerry to separate out pager alerts from the clutter of email and SMS messages.
Customizable alarms for notifying users when a pager alert arrives.
Easy-to-use web-based console for sending pager alerts and viewing real-time
alert statuses.
Two-way paging: The sender can create canned responses that recipients can easily scroll through and answer.
On-call distribution lists to ensure that only on-call staff are notified.
API which allows customers to integrate with any back-end IT system to initiate
a pager alert.
WiFi support to deliver pager alerts to WiFi-enabled BlackBerry smartphones.
Logging and reporting for analysis and regulatory compliance.
End-to-end encryption of all pager alerts, and powerful permissions-based architecture to ensure appropriate access to templates, distribution lists, on-call lists, users, etc.

WIC leverages the BES, allowing for secure and reliable communication. Since reliability is essential in a hospital, the WIC Pager also adds redundancy by failing-over to BlackBerry PIN-to-PIN messaging if necessary. The WIC Pager also utilizes both cellular and WiFi networks.

There is a lot of talk about other smartphones such as the iPhone making its way into the healthcare industry, but none of them can offer the end-to-end encryption necessary in a hospital. Doctors are walking around with very sensitive patient data and the BlackBerry network provides a channel for this data to be transmitted securely. Regardless of what healthcare apps exist on other platforms, it’s this security that makes the BlackBerry somewhat competitor-free.

The WIC-Alerter is also available in App World.

  • WillieLee

    While some feel RIM is “outdated” I think they are only just beginning to show how far ahead they are. Data compression and security for smartphones are finally becoming newsworthy items for the media and RIM does enjoy a very large lead over the competition.

    While companies such as Apple and Google have worked to blur the definition of enterprise, there are industry standards for security and RIM will still be the choice for the large customers.

  • Sandy Swiss

    My hospital paging system uses which has designed, installed and maintained over 1000 wireless systems throughout North America, as well as DoD installations in Qatar, South Korea and Japan. Their paging systems are efficient and all employees receive their messages on time!