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University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust

University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust (UHSFT) is one of the UK’s most innovative healthcare providers and a pioneer in medical research, operating the Southampton General Hospital, the Princess Anne Hospital, Southampton Children’s Hospital, and the New Forest Birth Centre at Ashurst, Hampshire.

They are one of only two major trauma centres in the South of England for both adults and children, covering a broad spectrum of specialist services including neurological, cardiac and children’s intensive care.

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Organisation type


Size of operation

13,000 staff & 1,300 beds across the Trust

Client since



Product suites

  • SPARK® Connect - Free WiFi
  • SPARK® Media: Lite
  • Hospital radio
  • BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)
  • 24/7/365 support
  • Charity links & NHS resources
  • Puzzle games
Patient Using Horizon

What makes UHSFT brilliant?


UHSFT provide hospital services to around 1.9 million people in Southampton and South Hampshire


They were the first hospital in England to use stem cell injections to improve mobility after stroke


Southampton Hospitals Charity work with the Trust to tailor and focus funding and improvements so that everyone has the best possible experience for their individual needs



  • Provide a free entertainment platform to patients and staff
  • Promote existing services and what’s available through their patient engagement platform
  • Offer a buildable and scalable solution that can be developed in the future
  • Work in collaboration with the Charity to increase exposure and engagement
  • Maintain regularity for patients while they’re inside hospital, to provide them with a sense of normality as well as clinical care and mental wellbeing
  • Introduce new initiatives such as ‘what 3 questions’ to inform and engage with the patient and visitor population

Our Solution

The Trust began as a Hospedia Ltd customer in 1997, where patients have access to the bedside units which sit on the arms connected to the wall at their bedside. The units primarily provide pay-to-use TV, movies, sports channels, and some additional services like a helpdesk.

25 years on, the bedside units remain at a cost to the patient to use. However, since joining forces with SPARK® TSL, University Hospital Southampton has made the best use of the units to include and adapt the free hospital services and information accessible at the bedside, such as adding a dementia orientation screen, NHS A-Z Health Index, food menus, a Patient safety video, and much more to increase efficiency and engagement. The TV channels are also now free from 6am-12pm, which is a positive step towards the ‘no patient pays’ initiative the company is striving for.

The provision then developed, as UHSFT wanted to introduce a modernised, free patient entertainment solution - accessible via patient's own devices - on top of the services on existing bedside units. This is known as SPARK® Media: Lite, which is a free add-on to the WiFi service that the Trust has. The platform works towards improving the patient experience and introducing a cost-effective solution that everyone could benefit from, as well as for the Trust to recognise and understand their existing infrastructure already in place and how to make the most out of it.

The entire solution is supported 24/7/365 by SPARK® TSL’s UK-based Service Desk. The team is accessible via phone, email and live chat any time of day to ease any technical pressures on staff.

Increased charity awareness

By displaying Southampton Hospitals Charity information to each user that connects to the WiFi, the branding is further reinforced when patients and visitors access the SPARK® Media: Lite platform. A banner sits on the dashboard and a tab allows users to freely browse charity links, enabling them to get involved by making donations and stay up to date with charity activities.

UHS mock up

SPARK® Media - Entertaining 
298,000 people so far in 2023

Our guest-access WiFi product, SPARK® Connect, was deployed at UHSFT in 2021 and sees over 24,800 unique devices a month across the Trust.

This platform includes a host of entertainment and engagement services when the user connects to the WiFi, via the SPARK® Media: Lite platform, which is included for every Connect customer.

Unlike the existing patient entertainment services on the bedside units, it is free at the point of use and is on patient’s own devices.


With SPARK® Media: Lite, patients, visitors, and staff, can enjoy entertainment and engagement at their fingertips from the device of their choice, offering digital inclusivity within the Trust.

The NHS’ health and care videos have been viewed by many, showing a desire from patients to play an active role in their health journeys.

With SPARK® TSL also offering digital print, video calling, and more games and TV packages, the Trust can explore these further whilst looking at live usage data. 

It is fundamentally important that our patients feel engaged and connected with their families, friends, and work colleagues during any period of ill health or procedure they may be encountering. UHS and SPARK® TSL share the vision to provide a relevant, user-friendly experience that provides connectivity and stimulus to those when they need it most

- Matthew Hine Commercial Development Manager, UHSFT



My Medical Record, located in the 'My Care' section of the portal is a web-based app that has gained popularity among patients.

With an average of 200 monthly visitors, this service allows users to easily access their personal health record, read hospital letters, check upcoming appointments, communicate with their care teams and more, with a simple click of a button.

Helping patients to help themselves at the bedside, so they can remain in control and feel more at ease during their time in hospital.

Stay in control of your health journey


The Future

The future for SPARK® TSL and UHSFT holds great potential for further collaboration and innovation. The Trust has acknowledged the importance of engaging with their patient experience teams to ensure they are well-informed about the range of services available and to effectively communicate these offerings to patients at the bedside.

Utilising the existing infrastructure and the features already available on the bedside units, both parties aim to maximise the benefits for patients. The plan also includes building upon the SPARK® Media platform, further enhancing the overall patient experience, and providing even more options for free engagement and entertainment.

In addition to the partnership in improving Trust and patient services, SPARK® TSL extends the support by sponsoring awards and events organised by University Hospital Southampton. Their upcoming event in September 2023 is the ‘We are UHS Champions’. This involvement provides an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the achievements within the healthcare sector.

With this collaborative approach, SPARK® TSL and UHSFT aim to foster a strong and mutually beneficial relationship that continually strives to improve patient experiences and contribute to the success of the Trust's initiatives.

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To download a copy of the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust case study as a PDF, simply click the link below.

Download the case study