Pinacle Health

Business Drivers

  • Optimise emergency department security
  • Reduce incidents in parking areas
  • Secure controlled pharmaceuticals
  • Protect newborns in maternity ward

Key Highlights

  • PinnacleHealth was an early adopter of IP-based video technologies.
  • Tyco installed IP-based security cameras throughout the facilities, as well as an IP based access control system and more.
  • The system has helped catch thieves and significantly reduce security incidents at PinnacleHealth facilities.


PinnacleHealth is the leading healthcare system in central Pennsylvania, with a 130-year tradition of providing diverse medical services to the community. The system includes the 607-bed Harrisburg Hospital, the area’s major acute care facility, as well as community general and rehabilitation hospitals, an outpatient facility, laboratories, and several other facilities – all within a 32 kilometre radius. Security has long been of optimal importance to PinnacleHealth officials, and as security technology has expanded, they have moved to capitalise on it to help keep their patients, staff, visitors and other stakeholders safe in areas including emergency departments, maternity wards, pharmacies and parking facilities.


Working with Tyco, PinnacleHealth was an early adapter of IP technology, with more than 270 IP-based cameras currently installed among their sites. Streams are transmitted over Pinnacle’s network to 17 dedicated camera servers, and all video is recorded continuously. In the Emergency Department, each trauma room includes a monitor providing nurses with a view of the waiting room as well as a panic button to summon security personnel if needed. The Department also includes seclusion rooms, where potentially violent patients are kept while awaiting treatment. Magnetic locks protect the doors and require an authorized access card for entry. From the nurses’ station, nurses can use pan-tilt-zoom cameras to view inside each seclusion room and, due to the clarity of the video, even zoom in to check and monitor patient respirations. In the maternity area, Tyco helped the hospital meet their goals of maintaining a friendly environment while tightly controlling access. In the parking areas, cameras are placed on each floor as well in the elevators. Cameras mounted on hospital buildings provide views of nearby offsite lots used by employees. Pinnacle's access control system includes more than 600 card readers, and is also IP-based. In addition, Tyco designed and installed a customised wireless access control application that utilises card readers on each of the hospital's mobile anaesthesia carts, helping PinnacleHealth meet government regulations. The access system also helps monitor medication dispensing cabinets.


The hospital's pioneering migration to IP-based video proved valuable almost immediately, when an ATM user was robbed on site. The grainy black-and-white photos produced by the ATM's cameras were of no help to police, but the IP cameras picked up the robber as he fled and the clear images enabled police to identify and arrest a suspect. The quality video has also been useful in mitigating slip and fall claims. Hospital officials report that assaults on visitors and staff have been virtually eliminated and vehicle break-ins significantly reduced. PinnacleHealth continually relies upon Tyco's expertise to provide input on the latest technologies that might be beneficial in their facilities.


Filed Under: Healthcare, Security, Security

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