Customer Spotlight

Mercy Hospital of Iowa City

TECHNOLOGIES: Fire and Security | Information Technology


Mercy Hospital in Iowa City has been caring for Iowans since 1873, when four Sisters of Mercy traveled to Iowa City to open the community’s first hospital. Today, Mercy is a 234-bed, acute-care community hospital and regional referral center for southeast Iowa, providing a full range of medical services.

Customer Needs

Mercy Hospital needed to update its 20-year-old access control system, which was a magnetic stripe reader. In addition to being out of date, the system was also malfunctioning in cold, hot, or wet weather conditions. Because of the system’s age, it was difficult to add or change users. The access control system had reached its capacity, and Mercy Hospital was looking for a solution that would withstand severe weather and prepare the organization for the future.


Mercy Hospital had partnered with CEC in the past for nurse call and video surveillance solutions. Based on its experiences with those projects, Mercy chose to partner with CEC for a new access control system as well.

After partnering with CEC, Mercy Hospital of Iowa City now has:

  • Proximity readers that have decreased the amount of time staff members spend accessing parking ramps.
  • Access control cards that are no longer damaged by swiping; with the new proximity readers, the card is simply held in front of the reader and doesn’t make contact with the device. The cards last much longer and don’t need to be replaced as often.
  • A noticeable decrease in complaints from staff members who can’t access areas of the hospital due to a system malfunction.
  • An access control solution that is scalable; it will accommodate Mercy Hospital’s future growth with no problems.
  • An intuitive software system that makes it easy to add users, remove users, and change access levels.
  • An access control system that can be used hospital-wide, from parking ramps and parking lots to the pharmacy, the mental health clinic, labor/delivery, and IT.

As a hospital, we’re up and running 24/7. When our systems go down, I need to know I can get things resolved quickly. CEC is reliable, easy to get in touch with, knows our systems, and always responds in a timely manner. That’s huge for us in maintaining productivity and costs.

Mike Wilwol Safety/Security Manager, Mercy Hospital of Iowa City
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