Free wi-fi in NHS buildings across Lancashire

Published March 24, 2016 at 11:41

Patients and visitors to hospitals, most NHS buildings and many GP practices across Lancashire are benefitting from free wi-fi.

The project to roll out free wi-fi for the public aims to improve patient experience and has been running for the last couple of years.

East Lancs Hospitals NHS trust, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS foundation Trust, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS foundation trust and many GP practices across Lancashire now offer Citizen Wi-fi in their public areas.

The project has been delivered by North West Shared Infrastructure Service, an NHS collaborative group which encourages cross boundary working and better use of technology across organisations.

Andrew Thompson, Head of North West Shared Infrastructure Service, which is hosted by Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust, said:

The government has said they wanted all NHS buildings to provide free wi-fi. But we have been rolling it out across Lancashire for a number of years now to our NHS estate.

People have told us it’s a great service.  We have been advised by users of the service that it improves the patient experience and provides what many citizens now see as a basic right, free internet access.

We are now in the process of rolling out the service into University hospitals Morecambe Bay but the solution has been designed to make it available for any health or council service providers to use going forward.

Mark Johnson, Associate Director of Performance and Informatics, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, said:

Free Public wi–fi has been incredibly popular and is used extensively across our sites. We’re now investing in additional infrastructure to extend the coverage in our community hospitals and have been surprised at the increasing  numbers of patients and public who are using this service.

Vikki Lewis, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Foundation NHS Trust, said: “The Trust rolled out the free public wi-fi in July 2015 across the two hospitals at Royal Preston Hospital and Chorley and South Ribble Hospital. It has been a huge success with our patients, visitors and students in enabling them to have free access to the internet whilst on site.

The same solution is being used in Blackburn with Darwen Council buildings such as libraries and town halls.

Vikki Lewis, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals Foundation NHS Trust, said:

The Trust rolled out the free public wifi in July 2015 across the two hospitals at Royal Preston Hospital and Chorley and South Ribble Hospital. It has been a huge success with our patients, visitors and students in enabling them to have free access to the internet whilst on site.

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