Applying RFID to General Medical & Surgical Hospitals

General Medical & Surgical Hospitals in the U.S. and Canada engage in providing diagnostic and medical treatment to in-patients of all ages for diseases and various medical conditions. These hospitals provide outpatient, medical dispensations, diagnostic X-Rays and clinical laboratory services.

GAO RFID’s technology can be explored to develop a host of solutions for General Medical and Surgical hospitals. The goal would be to create the following benefits:

  • Automate data collection services
  • Boost revenue
  • Increase asset utilization
  • Track inventory
  • Check the expiration dates of medications
  • Improve operational efficiency
  • Retrieve lost or stolen devices
  • Manage In-patient arrival flow at the hospital
  • Track patient specimens, blood cultures, and medications
  • Track patient discharge

With our RFID solutions, we can work with you to develop ways to assist health care providers, security personnel and administration staff to ensure the efficient operation of the General Medical and Surgical hospital establishment.

Hospitals can achieve real world benefits from employing radio frequency identification (RFID). Hospitals and medical facilities that utilize RFID technology may be able to improve patient safety and increase asset utilization in real-time tracking. Increased automation increases revenue and decreases the percentage of medical errors by using track and match applications. An RFID solution for Hospitals can positively impacting ROI in the healthcare environment while simultaneously improving efficiencies.

Working Towards A Solution: General Medical & Surgical Hospitals

Keeping track of medical supplies is a problem faced by many hospitals, and large inventories of medical supplies can easily be misplaced or lost—by employing RFID technology, this may be able to be reduced.

Inventory Tracking Medical Devices

The average hospital has 1000 medical devices stored in medical library rooms. There can be up to 2000 equipment loans in a month from a medical equipment library in a hospital. Being aware of the location and status of medical devices is integral to the efficient operation of any medical facility. By employing the fundamentals of our RFID Asset Tracking System, we may be able to develop a solution for Hospitals where an RFID Tag that can be attached to each individual medical device. The Tag can be programmed to transmit a unique I.D. several times per minute. When a healthcare worker removes a medical device from the equipment library a Fixed Point RF Reader connected to the hospital network instantly updates the central software. Location searches may be done from a local PC, tablet or smartphone alerting an employee of inventory levels, enabling the locating of items within minutes instead of hours in a large facility.

Medical equipment libraries are used to store some of the following medical items:

  • Syringe drivers
  • Syringe pumps
  • Patient cardiac monitoring
  • Nebulisers
  • Volumetric infusion pumps
  • Pulse oximeters
  • Humidifiers
  • Feed pumps
  • X-ray equipment
  • Ultrasound equipment
  • Blood counter
  • Portable electrocardiograph

Equipment Management

By exploring the use of RFID, loan requests for equipment may be monitored from a Handheld RFID Reader. Specific wards in a hospital can be selected from a drop down list. An example could be a nurse looking for an infusion pump—virtually any item that can be tagged can be located in real-time. This prevents double booking of medical devices and eliminates the need to write down serial numbers or spend countless labour hours searching for equipment again.

Equipment Servicing

We can explore a way to use RFID to track the life cycle of medical devices. Medical devices all come with warranties and keeping track of regular servicing during the acquisition stage goes a long way to prolonging and maintaining equipment during its life cycle. Regular maintenance prevents replacing medical equipment this means more cost savings for medical and surgical hospitals.

A Typical Life Cycle of Medical Equipment

  1. Planning
  2. Acquisition
  3. Delivery and Incoming Inspection
  4. Inventory and documentation
  5. Installation
  6. Training of Operators
  7. Monitoring of medical devices
  8. Maintenance
  9. Replacement and disposal

Preventative maintenance reduces the hospitals budget for new medical equipment and developing a GAO RFID solution for Hospitals can help to improve the process.

Tracking Patients

From new born babies to seniors suffering from dementia, the GAO RFID Personnel/Patient Tracking system can be customized so that Hospitals can track and authenticate patients. This means patients can found, wherever they are within the hospital, and when it is time to administer medication or start an operation, nurses and surgeons may be able to positively identify the patient to ensure the right procedure is given to the right person; boosting overall patient safety and operations efficiency.

Recalling Drugs using RFID

Patient care is the optimum purpose served by hospitals. All medical facilities have crash carts containing emergency medical kits located at stationary locations. Each crash cart can have 20 to 50 medications required for a patient’s urgent need ,for example heart and stroke victims. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recalls between 350 and 375 pharmaceutical drugs annually. A hospital’s pharmacy must have the ability to determine if it has administered the recalled medication to its patients. The location of consumables may be tracked if we work together to create an RFID based solution. Time is money, and RFID technology may be able to eliminate the need for hospital staff manually opening up each sealed kit and returning the recalled medication back to the pharmacy.

Integrating our solution with your Healthcare Management System

After developing the RFID system with you, it can be integrated with your hospitals central software solution.

Radio frequency technology can locate devices in seconds instead of hours. Performing equipment audits can now be performed in hours instead of days, eliminating extra scheduling of staff for inventory checks. Keeping a hospital’s payroll budget within set parameters prevents a medical establishment from exceeding their annual budget.

List of Relevant Information Management Systems

Contact us for more information on how our RFID software and hardware health care system can be configured for your hospital.