Dec. 10, 2019

Assa Abloy: Cliq Keys for Hospital Security

  • Assa Abloy’s Cliq locking system is being used at several hospitals to ensure their patients’ privacy and safety. (Photo: Assa Abloy)Assa Abloy’s Cliq locking system is being used at several hospitals to ensure their patients’ privacy and safety. (Photo: Assa Abloy)

Assa Abloy’s Cliq locking system can help hospitals ensure their patients’ and staff’s privacy and safety while not abandoning a key-based system altogether. Staff carry a single, programmable key to unlock all authorised openings, including doors, gates, alarm boxes, cabinets and lifts.

Programmable electronic key systems put the advantages of sophisticated access control into the form of a traditional key. They reinvent the key for the 21st century, making it more flexible, more powerful and better equipped to handle the security demands of a busy place. Lost keys and departed employees are no longer a problem, because their key’s access rights can be cancelled easily. And at multiple secure points around the hospital, the familiarity of a key is welcome to a user group who are generally no experts in access control technology. Keys can be as smart as any card-based credential. For example, the Cliq technology from Assa Abloy backs up the familiarity and ease of use of key-based locking with the flexible management and real-time security features of an intelligent electronic access system.

A Cliq locking system consists of battery-powered, programmable keys; cable-free padlocks and cylinders that are easy to retrofit to almost any standard opening; and management software you can run locally or via a secure cloud. For users, Cliq means carrying a single, programmable key pre-loaded to unlock all authorised openings. For hospital security managers, a programmable key solution enables them to create personalised access schedules — even for temporary contractors — and collect audit trails for doors or keyholders automatically. Staff travel into, out of and through the hospital based on the rules managers can set and program into their keys.

Many hospitals find this system invaluable in managing access to drugs and other controlled substances. Nursing staff using older mechanical key systems struggle to keep track of who has the right keys. Searching for that person to gain access to drugs wastes precious time. Unauthorized access to drug stores can bring serious financial and safety implications. At Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, pharmacy managers sought a better solution adapted to nurse-accessed medicine stores.

They chose a Protec2 Cliq system which combines mechanical disc cylinders with battery powered, programmable Cliq keys. Lock electronics are powered by the battery inside every key, so the retrofit was cable-free. The Cliq devices secure doors, cabinets and mobile drug trolleys within the same access system. Security and pharmacy managers can see who opened every lock whenever they want — making medicine audits and incident investigation much easier.

“Programmable key solutions can really boost medicine safety in hospitals”, says Stephan Schulz, Cliq Product Manager at Assa Abloy EMEA. “Nurses at Queen Elizabeth, Birmingham, carry their own key with personalised access rights, so they don’t waste time finding out who has the key to every cupboard. A similar system trialled at Scunthorpe Hospital found the total wasted time eliminated would equate to having an additional 24 nurses on duty across the Trust every day.”

Key-based access solutions are equally easy to operate at a bigger scale: At the University Hospital in Frankfurt, Germany, 1,100 Ecliq cylinders secure the doors doors in a new building. A fully electronic implementation of Assa Abloy’s Cliq technology, Ecliq cylinders and keys are easy for staff to use and for hospital security managers to administer from web-based software. The Cliq Web Manager makes it easy to program, reprogram and audit every Cliq key, cylinder or padlock. Because the interface is accessible from anywhere with an internet connection, administrators can manage a Cliq system whenever and from wherever they choose. Its architecture also supports multiple administrators or sites.

The Web Manager integrates easily with all kinds of business management software, helping managers automate tedious operations and processes. The system can run in a self-hosted IT environment or completely free of local software installation with two different Software as a Service solutions: Shared SaaS or Dedicated SaaS with individual hosting and individual maintenance schedules a user sets.

Medical facilities can learn more about the system on Assa Abloy’s website.


Dukes Street
Woking Surrey GU21 5BH
United Kingdom
Phone: +49 30 8106 2970
Telefax: + 49 8106 1970

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