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Publication numberUS2736888 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 28, 1956
Filing dateFeb 9, 1953
Priority dateFeb 9, 1953
Publication numberUS 2736888 A, US 2736888A, US-A-2736888, US2736888 A, US2736888A
InventorsGeorge H Mclain
Original AssigneeGeorge H Mclain
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Hospital annunciator system
US 2736888 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Feb. 28, 1956 H. MCLAIN 2,736,888

HOSPITAL ANNUNCIATOR SYSTEM 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 9, 1953 V @MM Z 24 P1 Q.-

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Feb. 28, 1956 G. H. M LAIN HOSPITAL ANNUNCIATOR SYSTEM 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. 9, 1953 INVEN TOR. GA'OKGZ /7 M 4 fi/M J flrramv rs United States Patent O This invention relates generally to annunciator systems and more particularly to a hospital annunciator system I adapted to indicate at a central point the needs of a plurality of bed patients in a number of rooms or wards.

Conventional hospital annunciator systems comprise nothing more than an annunciator indicator, showing room numbers or bed numbers, adapted to be operated by a push button disposed adjacent to the bed of each patient. When the patient calls a nurse by operating the annunciator, it is impossible for him to convey any information other than his need for attention. Thus, a nurse answers the call by going to the patient, learning that he needs water or a bed pan or some other apparatus, after which she must go to a store room and return with the desired item. Thus, a nurse must make two complete trips to a patients bedside in answering his annunciator.

Accordingly, the principal object of this invention is to provide an annunciator system for hospitals having apparatus adapted to indicate one of several of the standard needs of the hospital patient.

In accordance with this invention there is provided an annunciator system comprising a plurality of annunciators at a central point, each of which is adapted to give indications of a specific need of a bed patient, and control circuits each including selector switches at each patients bed for setting the annunciators to indicate the particular patients needs.

The full nature of the invention will be understood from the accompanying drawings and the following description and claims:

Fig. 1 is a perspective view illustrating the arrangement ofannunciators at a central point in accordance with this invention.

Fig. 2 is a diagrammatic illustration of the arrangement of the various components of a control circuit adapted to control each of the annunciators shown in Fig. 1.

Fig. 3 is a circuit diagram showing one modification of a circuit for controlling the annunciators illustrated in Fig. 1. V

Fig. 4 is a circuit diagram illustrating another modification of a control circuit for each of the annunciators shown in Fig. 1.

Fig. 5 is a perspective view of a multiple switch adapted to be used in each of the control circuits shown in Figs. 2, 3 and 4.

Referring to Figs. 1 and 2 of the drawings there is provided an annunciator system comprising a plurality of indicators or annunciators 10 arranged at a central point as illustrated in Fig. 1, where an attending nurse can observe all of the annunciators simultaneously and ascertain the needs of the various patients in her charge. Each annunciator comprises a volt meter of conventional internal construction having labels 11 disposed about its periphery and on its face, each label bearing information such as bed pan, nurse, water, etc. Each annunciator 10 also includes at the upper portion thereof a signal or attention lamp 12 together with indicia 14 show- 2,736,888 Patented Feb. as, 1956 ing the room-number or bed number of the patient making a particular call.

In each patients room or adjacent to his bed there is provided a chest of drawers 15 or other piece of furniture within which may be housed a transformer and relay box 16 the details of which are illustrated more in detail in Figs. 3 and 4. A push button switch 18 such as that shown in Fig. 5 may be supported by means of a jointed arm structure 19 clamped to the bed 20 by means of a suitable conventional clamp 21 for movably and adjustably supporting the switch for the convenience of the patient;

Fig. 3 illustrates a control circuit for each annunciator 10 which comprises a voltage divider in the form of an auto transformer 23 connected to one side of annunciator 10, and a plurality of push button signalling switches 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 and 29, each of which includes a con tact 30 connected to one of the taps such as 31, of transformer 23. Each of the switches also includes a contact such as 32 connected in multiple through conductor 33 to signal lamp 12. The other side of the lamp may be connected to a commercial power source 35. The movable contact of each switch maybe connected through conductor 36 to the other side of power source 35. When switch 24 is closed, for example, voltage is connected across lamp 12 through contact 32-, and simultaneously the entire winding of transformer 23 is connected across the annunciator 10. Since the annunciator is a volt meter, its needle; will be rotated in accordance with the voltage impressed thereon through approximately 315 to point to the label urinal. If switch 25 is closed by the patient; then a lesser amount of voltage is impressed on annunciator 10, and the needle will indicate the patients need of an orderly. Each of the switches 26, 2-7, 28 and 29 impresses a progressively smaller voltage on annunciator 10 and, therefore, each of the other labels will be pointed out by the pointer when the proper switches are operated.

Fig. 4 illustrates another modification of the circuit shown in Fig. 3 wherein individual voltage dividing trans formers 38, 39, 40, 41, 42 and 43 are substituted for auto transformer 23. In this type of circuit it is necessary' to provide cut-out, or isolating switching relays in the secondary circuits of each transformer and, therefore, relays 45, 46, 41, 48, 49 and 50 are connected across the secondary windings of transformers 39 to 43, respectively Each of the signalling switches 24 to 29 are connected to separate primary windings of transformers 3i; to 43, respectively, and each of these switches includes two contacts, one for energizing a primary winding and the other for energizing a signal or attention lamp 1?. of annunciator 10. When switch 24 is closed, for example, the primary winding of transformer 38 is energized, energizing the secondary winding of that transformer and also energizing the winding of relay 45, closing its contacts and impressing a predetermined voltage, for example, volts on annunciator 10. As in the case of switch 24 in Fig. 3, maximum voltage is impressed on annunciator 10, and the pointer will indicate urinal. The purpose of relays 45 to 50 is to prevent connection of relatively high voltage to relatively low voltage secondaries. Thus, when relay 45 closes its contacts, the 90 volts is connected only to annunciator 10, all of the other relay contacts being open, thereby to prevent connection of a high voltage to a low voltage winding.

The operation of this circuit is otherwise identical to that described in connection with Fig. 3.

Fig. 5 of the drawings illustrates a re-settable push button signalling switch 18 having structure which holds the switch closed after it has once been operated, but which may be released as soon as a call has been an- 2,7se,sss

swered. The switch also has structure which causes automatic resetting of an operated switch when a second switch is operated.

Switch 18 comprises a casing 55 having apertures in the front and rear sides thereof for slidably supporting a plurality of switch operating cam bars 56, 57 and 58. Each cam bar includes a push button 59, a release cam such as 5%), and a switch operating cam surface 61. Each of the cams as cooperate with a rotatable latch bar 62 pivotally mounted in the ends of box 55 and biased in a counterclockwise direction by means of springs 63 and 64, each of which may be hooked to the end of the box and to the left hand edge of bar 62. Each of the switch operating cam bars 56, 57, 58 is biased to an outer idle position by means of springs such as 65 which are compressed between the rear side of box 55 and pins 66 mounted in the cam bars 56, 57, 58.

Each of the cam bars is associated with a pile of switch contacts comprising three contacts 24, 3t), 32 corresponding to those illustrated in Figs. 3 and 4. The switch also includes a reset mechanism comprising a bar 76 having a cam 71 and a biasing spring 72. This bar is identical to the switch operating bars except that it has no cam surface for operating switch members.

In operation, the switch bar 58 may be pushed inwardly moving cam 6 under the pivoted latch 62. Cam 6% rotates latch bar 62 in a clockwise direction whereby the switch bar is permitted to move from the forward side of latch bar 62 to the rear side of bar 62. When the switch bar is released from pressure, spring 65 moves it in a forward direction until the perpendicular side of cam so engages the rear side of latch bar 62, whereby the bar 58 is locked in its rearmost position. In this position, cam surface 6:. will have closed the electrical contacts 24, 3b, 32 associated therewith. When a second bar 56 is pushed inwardly or when the ret-set bar 71! is pushed inwardly, the associated cam 60 will pivot latch bar 62 in a clockwise direction releasing any switch operating bar which has been previously operated. In this manner a switch of this type functions to prevent two switches from being closed simultaneously. This type of switch also permits a nurse or other attendant to open an operated switch by pushing the release bar 70 inwardly, whereby any operated annunciator may be restored to its idle position and its indication removed.

While the invention has been disclosed as including voltmeters, it will be readily understood by those skilled in the art that ammeters or other electrical measuring instruments may be substituted for voltmeters. also be readily understood that the annunciators 10 may be provided with labels 11 hearing whatever indicia may be appropriate to the needs of a particular patient. For example, patients in maternity wards or in surgery wards might have different needs which would require the use of different labels. The multiple switch illustrated in 5 is not shown with labels under each button for the sake of clarity, but it will be obvious that such a switch may be provided with suitable labels corresponding to those utilized on a cooperating annunciator. Such labels may be readily changed to correspond with expected needs of any particular patient.

The invention claimed is:

1. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group or voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light; a source of power; and. a plurality of control circuits connected between saidv indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a plurality of transformers the secondary windings which have different voltage outputs and are connected in multiple across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, normally open relay switch means connected across the secondary winding of each transformer for isolating non-energized secondary windings with respect It will to the output voltage of an energized secondary winding, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a primary winding of a difierent transformer and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

2. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light; a source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a voltage divider having different voltage outputs connected across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, relay switch means connected across each output for isolating non-energized outputs with respect to the output voltage of an energized output, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a different portion of said voltage divider and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

3. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators; a source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a voltage divider having diflferent voltage outputs connected across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, relay switch means connected across each output for isolating non-energized outputs with respect to the output voltage of an energized output, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a different portion of said voltage divider and said source of power.

4. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light, a source of power, and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a plurality of transformers the secondary windings of which have different voltage outputs and are connected in multiple across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches each of which includes contacts connected between a primary winding of one of a different said transformers and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

5. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators; 21 source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a plurality of transformers the secondary windings of which have different voltage outputs and are connected in multiple across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a par ticular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a primary winding of a different one of said transformers and said source of power.

6. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators; a source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a plurality of voltage sources each of which have different voltage outputs and are connected in multiple across one of said indicators to provide an indication. correlated to a particular voltage output, normally open relay switch means connected across each said source for isolating non-energized sources with respect to the output voltage of an energized source, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a different one of said sources and said source of power.

7. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light, a source of power, and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a plurality of voltage dividers, each of which have different voltage outputs and are connected in multiple across one of said indicators to provide an in dication correlated to a particular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches each of which includes contacts connected between a dilferent voltage divider and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

8. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light; a source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising an auto-transformer having a plurality of taps to provide different voltage outputs across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a tap of one of said transformers and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

9. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators; 21 source of power; and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising an auto-transformer having a plurality of taps to provide difierent voltage outputs across one of said indicators to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches, each of which includes contacts connected between a tap of one of said transformers and said source of power.

10. An annunciator system for hospitals comprising a centralized group of voltage responsive indicators each of which includes an attention light, a source of power, and a plurality of control circuits connected between said indicators and said source of power, each circuit comprising a multi-section voltage divider coupled to one of said indicators, each section of said divider having a difierent voltage output to provide an indication correlated to a particular voltage output, and a plurality of signalling switches each of which includes contacts connected between a different section of said voltage divider and said source of power and other contacts connected between said attention signal and said source of power.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,116,407 Friedrick Nov. 10, 1914 1,230,410 Kaisling June 19, 1917 1,626,560 Schneider Apr. 26, 1927 1,751,972 Bobrotf Mar. 25, 1930 1,826,501 Bobroff Oct. 6, 1931 2,333,406 Ballard Nov. 2, 1943 2,374,439 Korevac Apr. 24, 1945 2,599,702 Elliott June 10, 1952 2,622,141 Oberman et al. Dec. 16, 1952

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2910680 *Feb 27, 1956Oct 27, 1959Mclain George HAnnunciator system for hospitals
US4298863 *Feb 10, 1980Nov 3, 1981St. Anthony Hospital SystemsPortable patient call
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Classifications
U.S. Classification340/316, 340/815.81, 340/8.1
International ClassificationG08B5/26
Cooperative ClassificationG08B5/26
European ClassificationG08B5/26