As the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM) — Idaho’s first medical school — was preparing to open its doors for its inaugural year, numerous large, sturdy monitors with high-quality images were needed to complete the state-of-the-art facility. Sharp commercial LCD displays proved to be perfect for the job, while remaining cost-effective for the school.
Business Environment Challenges
When the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM) opened its doors in August of 2018, it began with a vision “to be the nation’s leader in training caring and expert osteopathic physicians.” In order to help fulfill this ambition, the Meridian, Idaho-based school looked to install high-quality monitors around campus to enhance the learning experience for its students and instructors.
ICOM required numerous sturdy, high-quality monitors in a variety of large sizes—while remaining within the school’s budget. Because precision is of the utmost concern when it comes to medical training, there is a general push in the healthcare industry to use 4K resolution displays. ICOM sought alternative 1080p resolution solutions that also offered crystal clear images. The monitors had to be big enough for 80 to 100 students to view in a laboratory without crowding around them. In addition, they needed to be durable enough to run for long periods of time since they were also to be used for digital signage purposes throughout the campus.
Business Technology Solutions
LightWerks Communication Systems, an A/V installation and integration company, was selected to install 56 Sharp monitors throughout the ICOM campus: 90” Class (90 1/64” diagonal), 80” Class (80” diagonal), 70” Class (69 1/2” diagonal) and 60” Class (60 3/32” diagonal) commercial LCD displays. ICOM IT Director Brian Atkinson had confidence that Sharp monitors would do the job, based on prior experience working with Sharp displays.
“The level of image quality for the price was the key driving factor for us,” Atkinson said. “These monitors are of such high quality that our users don’t miss having 4K displays, and the price point was much lower. We could afford to put in these 1080p displays in all of our spaces instead of only being able to fit maybe a few 4K displays in some key areas, but then having to go with some consumer models in our other spaces.”
The 56 monitors suit a variety of purposes to enhance the education experience for both instructors and students alike. For example, the giant 90” Class (90 1/64” diagonal) display is used as a “confidence monitor” in the large auditoriums. It allows the instructor to view content without having to turn his or her back to the students to view the projector.
The monitors in the Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) Laboratory are also large and clear enough for students to view without crowding around the instructor. This specialized training room for Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) students has nine displays ranging from the 60” Class (60 3/32” diagonal) commercial displays that are hung from the ceiling and 90” Class (90 1/64” diagonal) and 80” Class (80” diagonal) commercial displays that are mounted on walls. The OMM Lab monitors enable students to learn how to perform muscle manipulation and how to do hands-on manipulation with their patients.
“A split screen can be used to provide alternate views of a manipulation,” Atkinson explains. “We get that nice, big image, close to the students where they can see it and understand the minute details of manipulative techniques, rather than everyone having to gather around the instructor.” He adds that Sharp displays are also in training simulator rooms to show vitals for medical dummies.
A variety of the monitors are also located around campus for digital signage usage including maps, campus events, and even social media feeds. And because the monitors have built-in tuners, they can be used to watch live TV in case of emergencies or other purposes as needed.
LightWerks Account Manager Jacob Booher received positive feedback about the installation from ICOM staff. “They really love them!” he claims. “Especially the giant 90” monitor display being used as a confidence monitor in the lecture hall.”
According to Atkinson, the grand opening was a major success and the monitors met the school’s needs in its initial semester as expected. Staff members are happy with the clarity of the displays; and with the sturdiness of the monitors, ICOM looks forward to training students to become future physicians for many years to come.
"These monitors are of such high quality that our users don’t miss having 4K displays, and the price point was much lower."