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Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

This case study explores our ongoing collaboration with Imperial College Healthcare, a valued customer with whom we've built a successful, evolving solution. In 2014, we addressed their initial need for robust WiFi infrastructure. Fast forward to 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic amplified the demand for faster, more reliable communication. Throughout this journey, we've consistently delivered the necessary upgrades and support.

This case study dives into the specifics of our partnership, showcasing how we provided:

tick-circle Increased connectivity
tick-circle Customised WiFi portals
tick-circle Comprehensive managed services for support and maintenance
tick-circle An on-demand entertainment and engagement platform for BYOD, SPARK® Media.
tick-circle Collaborative support for a partnering charity, enabling data-driven marketing efforts to raise awareness and donations.

Imperial College Hammersmith-Hospital-

Charity Focus: Imperial Health Charity

Organisation Type

NHS Trust

Size of Operation

Five London hospitals, Charring Cross, Hammersmith, Queen Charlotte’s & Chelsea, St Mary’s and the Western Eye.

Client Since


Product Suites

SPARK® Connect

  • Free guest-access and staff WiFi with tailored user experience portal
  • 24/7/365 support

SPARK® Media: Lite

  • Sudoku
  • BBC resources
  • Hospital resources
  • Charity links and information

What makes Imperial Health Charity so brilliant?


Size - They provide acute and specialist healthcare for over one million people every year. They particularly serve the local communities in the eight boroughs that form the North West London Integrated Care System.


History – The Trust stems back into history as being a pioneer in medicine. An example of their achievements can be viewed here: www.imperial.nhs.uk/about-us/how-we-are-doing/our-achievements


Awards – At the National Health Service Journal Awards in 2022, the Trust won 3 awards and were shortlisted for Trust of the Year and Driving Efficiency through Technology.

Side view of young female surgeon using digital tablet in front of computer at desk in clinic


  • Provide free to access WiFi across the Trust for patients, visitors and staff that’s fast, safe and reliable. 
  • Update the WiFi portal customisation to relay hospital, charity and engagement information through a tailored user experience. 
  • Develop a consensual line of communication between the charity and interested visitors, volunteers and patients. 
  • Increase exposure to the charity and encourage involvement and donations.  
  • Give patients, visitors and staff access to free entertainment across the Trust, available on their own devices.  
  • Offer a solution that was entirely supported, 24/7/365. 


Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust was formed on October 1, 2007 by merging St Mary's NHS Trust and Hammersmith Hospitals NHS Trust and integrating with the faculty of medicine at Imperial College London. With more than one million patient contacts each year, it is the sixth largest acute Trust in the NHS and London’s largest teaching hospital. In partnership with Imperial College London, it is the UK's first Academic Health Science Centre (AHSC). 

The SPARK® Solution - Part 1 

In 2014, SPARK® Connect was installed across Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust’s five sites and offered free and premium WiFi to guests. The solution provided a fully branded User Experience Portal (UX Portal), which the Trust was able to fully customise with imagery, logos, and colour schemes. The Trust already had the wireless infrastructure in place for clinical use, so they simply needed one of our SPARK® Gateways, which is responsible for controlling the public traffic and providing the relevant security, compliancy and filtering requirements. We worked with the Trust to set-up an additional WiFi name (SSID) which is an additional network layer on the existing network and routes all traffic through SPARK’s powerful gateway and controls all user sessions. Round the clock, reliable support is provided by SPARK TSL’s UK-based service desk 24/7/365. This means that the Trust and Charity can prioritise their own tasks and not have to worry about any issues that may arise.  

However, the strength of the connection could be improved and the WiFi authentication page was a simple one click portal, missing the opportunity to collect data from WiFi visitors. These features are available to our customers, but at the time, Imperial College opted for a simpler solution which met their current needs. However, the needs of the NHS are constantly evolving. Luckily for them, the SPARK Solution is buildable and scalable.  

When covid hit, our hospitals had to restrict visiting meaning that patients were very isolated at the hospital. Better WiFi gave patients the chance to stay in touch with loved ones.

Hayley Pannick
Director of Development
Imperial Health Charity


The SPARK® Solution - Part 2 

The need to refresh the WiFi and build a stronger foundation for future growth was exasperated at the beginning of 2020 as the pandemic led to a surge in in-patients requiring a dependable connection and a channel for the Trust to interact with them. Working with SPARK TSL, Imperial Health Charity funded an overhaul that revolutionised the Trust’s offering across its five sites. Originally working on a six-month probationary period, the results of the transformation through increased sessions and engagement, saw the Trust and Charity extend the solution to a permanent fixture.  

Improvements included: 

After boosting the connectivity and ensuring a strong, secure and reliable network throughout the Trust, SPARK TSL was able to update their user experience portal (UX) to charity branding, creating more exposure. This page greet patients, visitors and staff upon their connection to the free NHS WiFi.  

Imperial College

Updated UX 

Branded in Imperial Health Charity colours and proudly displaying the charity’s logo, the UX works as a welcome gateway for users to get online. In this space, the charity can showcase a variety of events, opportunities, and updates throughout the year, while also guiding users to fundraising initiatives and ways to actively participate.  

Offering a new way for the charity to engage with the Trust’s visitors, and display updated information, Imperial Health Charity were able to solidify their brand identity and awareness within the Trust.  



Data Click Portals 

To develop the UX  further, visitors have the opportunity to enter their email and check a ‘hear more from us’ box which will enrol them into the charity’s Marketing database so that they may receive regular updates, even long after they’ve left the hospital. This allows the charity to nurture their relationships with fundraisers and keep them involved in future activities. This is all possible through data click portals.  

Data is collected in line with GDPR and can be analysed to paint a picture of the charity’s demographic audience. To make the most of this, charities need a CRM system to organise and clean the data so that it can be used in emails. The data can support Marketing campaigns and aid in the charity’s exponential growth by sending automated emails through workflows. This will increase engagement and drive donations. 

We hosted a charity webinar on just this.  

Download the SPARK TSL NHS Charity Webinar


The Numbers 

Since the system has been running, Imperial Health Charity have been receiving thousands of contacts enrolled into Marketing activity by opting in to updates via the data click portal on the guest-access WiFi. These are interested visitors who otherwise may have not known about the charity behind the Trust.  

Between August 2023 and December 2023, almost 15 thousand users subscribed to charity Marketing information. That’s an average of 3,000 a month! 

There were almost 2 million WiFi sessions in both 2022 and 2023 

SPARK® Media: Lite, a Patient Engagement Platform 

Customers who have our SPARK® Connect WiFi solution can automatically get free access to SPARK TSL’s patient engagement platform, SPARK® Media: Lite. It is available to all patients, staff and visitors on their own device. Users can navigate to this platform by searching for www.wifitv.co.uk in their web browser after connecting to the WiFi. They can access Sudoku, Trust information, a variety of NHS Care links including the NHS Apps Library and further information on the Charity.  

The patient engagement platform, SPARK® Media: Lite, presents endless opportunities for growth. Additional links can be added to further resources and it can be upgraded to the full Media package, providing live TV, radio and more puzzle games. Additional packages such as digital magazines can be added, providing entertainment for those in waiting rooms and hospital beds. SPARK® Media: Lite also presents another opportunity to establish the charity’s identity and engage with users.  

Download Icon - ICH


To download a copy of the Imperial College Healthcare case study as a PDF, simply click the link below.


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