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In 2022, the Nuffield Oxford Hospitals Fund (NOHF) provided funding to enable the Bodleian Health Care Libraries to install hybrid meeting equipment in the Beeson Room (Cairns Library, JR Hospital) and also to upgrade the IT infrastructure.

New hybrid meeting equipment set up in the Beeson Room

Written by Owen Coxall, Deputy Head of MSD and MPLS Libraries

Project 1: Installation of Hybrid meeting equipment

After a number of delays with contractors, we are delighted to report that the installation of the hybrid meeting equipment has now been finished. This report details the completion of the project to install new audio-visual equipment in the Beeson Room (Cairns Library, JR Hospital). The aims were to facilitate hybrid meetings and training sessions, combining in-person and remote participation.

Project background

The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated a shift to virtual communication for nearly two years. As we transitioned back to a "normal working" environment, new methods of working were required, including hybrid in-person/online sessions. By equipping the Beeson Room with appropriate technology, we can deliver group meetings and training sessions with a mix of on-site and online attendees.

Project activities

The project involved the installation of the following audio-visual equipment in the Beeson Room:

  • Large 4K widescreen display with HDMI connection: This facilitates clear presentation viewing for both in-person and remote participants.
  • Wide-angle webcam: This ensures all participants in the room are visible to remote attendees.
  • Speakers with primary and secondary microphones: This provides high-quality audio for everyone involved in the session.

Project benefits

The installation of this equipment has meant we now have:

  • Increased Flexibility: Hybrid sessions allow participants greater flexibility, eliminating the need for physical presence while still enabling face-to-face interaction.
  • Improved Accessibility: The technology removes geographical limitations, enabling participation from various locations. There has been increased demand for online teaching and meeting sessions, as our users are very busy and can’t get away from busy wards, departments or other physical limitations.
  • Enhanced Collaboration: Combining on-site and remote participation fosters a wider range of perspectives and richer collaboration. Online meetings have been very effective in terms of time management and location restrictions, but there is still an advantage to being face-to-face with other attendees, this equipment allows the best of both worlds.
  • Expanded Room Use: The Beeson Room, equipped for hybrid sessions, is now available for booking by staff from OUH and MSD, extending its use beyond Library staff.


The successful completion of the Beeson Room audio-visual equipment installation project has allowed us to offer space for hybrid meetings and training sessions. This development fosters a more flexible and inclusive work environment, enhancing collaboration and knowledge sharing across the organization.

Project 2: Improving IT Infrastructure


This report details the successful completion of the BHCL improving IT infrastructure upgrade project. This initiative addressed three key areas: replacing outdated library user computers, expanding the laptop loan program, and providing portable power solutions for flexible studying.

Project components

OUH Networked PC Replacement:

  • The existing, slow, and inoperable OUH networked PCs in the Cairns Library (JR), Girdlestone Memorial Library (NOC), and Knowledge Centre (Churchill) were replaced.
  • These new PCs provide users with improved performance and reliability, ensuring seamless access to essential OUH-specific IT resources.

Laptop Loan Program Enhancement:

  • The project expanded the library's laptop loan program to cater to the growing demand for flexible work and study options.
  • An increased number of up-to-date laptops are now available for borrowing.
  • Users can use these laptops within the library or take them for studying and working at home or other departments, promoting flexibility and convenience.

Portable Powerbank Integration:

  • To complement the increased number of study desks installed in the Cairns Library (funded by a previous NOHF bid), the project procured portable powerbanks.
  • These powerbanks eliminate the need for costly and disruptive electrical rewiring to provide power at each desk.
  • Additionally, the powerbanks can be loaned alongside laptops, further enhancing flexible work and study options in various locations.

Project benefits

The BHCL improving library IT infrastructure upgrade project has delivered several significant advantages:

  • Improved User Experience: Upgraded computers and expanded laptop availability ensure a smoother and more efficient experience for library users, as the previous models were proving frustrating to use.
  • Enhanced Flexibility: The project has helped enable flexible work and study habits by providing laptops and power solutions for use beyond the library confines.
  • Increased Accessibility: OUH-specific resources remain accessible due to the upgraded networked PCs, catering to users who require them, as access can be limited whilst outside the hospital sites.
  • Minimising Disruption Within the Library: The portable powerbanks offered a cost-effective solution for powering study desks, removing the cost and disruption of installing mains electricity.


The successful completion of the BHCL Library IT Infrastructure Upgrade Project equips the libraries with improved technology and resources to meet the evolving needs of users. This initiative fosters a more flexible, accessible, and user-centric library environment, supporting diverse work and study styles.

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