az groeninge Picks Proximus to Enable Private 5G

az groeninge Picks Proximus to Enable Private 5G

az groeninge in Kortrijk and Proximus NXT are currently proposing a pilot project that involves testing 5G applications in a real hospital environment. The aim of building a private 5G network on the hospital campus is to create an innovative environment that prepares the health care sector for the challenges of the future.

The federal government is also committed to this type of initiative by awarding grants within the framework of its call for 5G pilot projects.

The expansion of a private 5G network on the hospital campus is in line with the H.E.A.L.T.H. project, which stands for High-speed Enabled Advanced Life-Saving 5G Technological Hospital. With this project, Proximus NXT and az groeninge want to bring about a revolution in the health care sector by testing and implementing valuable 5G use cases in different domains. The knowledge and expertise stemming from this could form an example and source of inspiration for other hospitals.

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The focus is on applications relating to remote care, clinical communication, as well as data & training. This will therefore test the potential of 5G for robotic surgery, monitoring the health condition of patients using biosensors, as well as smart alerts for nurses and health care providers. The project also supports applications that underpin medical imaging, e.g. by converting X-ray images to an AR/VR environment, and promoting the exchange of knowledge by streaming operations, for instance, and making this available to colleagues, trainee doctors and knowledge institutions.

In addition, the project includes various applications for training purposes, such as anti-aggression training, to better prepare health care staff for unforeseen situations. With the help of AI and machine learning on a private Edge cloud infrastructure, the training sessions can gradually be further refined and tailored to specific training needs.

Alongside Proximus NXT and az groeninge, VIVES University of Applied Sciences (knowledge exchange), Mediventures (streaming of operations), Televic (smart alerts) and One Bonsai (virtual training environment) are also partners in this project.

“As a progressive hospital, we are pushing very hard for innovation. In the spring of 2023, The Greenhouse, our innovation and expertise hub, was established within the bosom of our (hospital) home. With this ambitious project, we immediately make our plans around innovation very concrete. I am delighted that today we are planting the seeds for the future together with our partners. The future is bright!” commented, Inge Buyse, CEO of az groeninge.

Pilot project with support from the federal government

At the end of 2023, the federal government selected the H.E.A.L.T.H project for funding, within the framework of a call for projects initiated by Minister De Sutter and the FPS Economy. This initiative was launched to promote the roll-out and implementation of 5G in Belgium and encourage further digitization for Belgian companies and citizens. The focus is on supporting 5G test environments by funding innovative pilot projects that contribute to pioneering solutions in different industrial sectors.

Following an initial allocation round at the beginning of 2023, 8 additional projects were selected in November, resulting in a joint funding amount of around EUR 5 million. The successful pilot projects were assessed on the basis of maturity, innovation, contribution to awareness of 5G, general sustainability and service improvement, as well as the use of AI and Edge computing.

In addition to the H.E.A.L.T.H. project, a further four Proximus NXT projects were allocated grant resources:

The development of the SafeAlert digital tool, in collaboration with subsidiary Be-Mobile. On the basis of real-time traffic and route data, the tool conducts risk analyses and sends alerts to increase traffic safety.

The further expansion of FacThory in Genk, a smart manufacturing campus equipped with state-of-the-art research infrastructure to facilitate the digitization and automation of production processes.

The transformation of prison facilities with digital tools to make working conditions of prison guards more efficient and safer, and promote the reintegration of prisoners in society.

Increase in the safety of maritime transport in an urban environment, with the help of a remote navigation system, in collaboration with Seafar.

“We are very proud that the innovative and socially relevant nature of our 5G pilot projects, including this pioneering H.E.A.L.T.H. project, is being recognized by the stakeholders in the field, as well by public authorities. By collaborating closely with our esteemed partners, we at Proximus NXT are creating advanced end-to-end solutions that really add value for our customers in a wide range of sectors, as well as benefiting society as a whole,” said, Anne-Sophie Lotgering, Enterprise Market Lead, Proximus.