Hospital uses UHF RFID tags for tracking surgical instruments and trays
Online PR News – 26-June-2013 – Hong Kong – Xerafy, a global supplier of RFID metal tags, has teamed with Caretag, a software and solution provider, to deliver traceability of surgical instruments and trays to a consortium of hospitals led by Rigshospital Copenhagen.
Sponsored by the Danish government fund for innovation, Förnyelsesfonden, the pilot project is comprised of hospitals and national health authorities including Rigshospital Copenhagen, Aarhus University Hospital, Aalborg University Hospital, Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden and the University Hospital in Lund, Sweden as well GS1 Denmark, the Danish health innovation society, and the Danish Medical technician society.
The projects goals are to RFID-enable sterilization centers at the instrument level to increase patient safety, optimize logistics and storage of surgical instruments within hospitals, optimize workflow at central sterile supply departments (CSSD) and surgical theaters, prevent the loss of instruments, free up time for better treatment and improve service to patients. The project will also serve as a de facto proof of concept for using RFID to comply with the forthcoming U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules for unique device identification (UDI) in hospitals.
The healthcare industry is currently undergoing rapid adoption of RFID to track and manage assets in hospitals. Previously, these applications were mainly centered on pharmaceutical tracking, sponges and hospital asset management. However, instrument traceability using RFID is gaining attention as healthcare practitioners seek to improve operational efficiency to provide high levels of service while keeping escalating costs under control.
A key challenge for the Rigshospital project was finding an RFID tag that was small enough for use on surgical instruments yet provided good read range around metals. Xerafy’s tags not only have the ability to be embedded in surgical instruments and devices to eliminate patient safety risks and generate real time visibility to every instruments reprocessing and use records, but can survive repeated autoclave and chemical cleaning cycles as surgical trays and instruments move throughout the sterile processing and OR workflows.
“Prior to Xerafy, surgical instrument level tracking within the healthcare industry was limited either to permanent laser marking which required line of sight or, at best, high frequency RFID tags, which required close proximity to read and could not support multiple reads, making the process slow, labor intensive and limited to basic track and trace,” said Michael Leibig, CEO of Caretag.
“Caretag’s asset tracking system is able to manage and track any type of equipment in a hospital,” said Dennis Khoo, CEO of Xerafy. “From knowing where equipment in located to the numbers of instruments currently in use or being cleaned, the system is able to collect and manage vast amounts of information that hospital administrators and sterilization technicians can monitor.”
This project will have a profound effect in the healthcare industry as a whole and represents the first time that all functions related to surgical instruments in a hospital, from the operating room to cleaning and storage, will be tracked and traced through a single system.
Caretag’s solutions are all about efficient handling of information. They develop software, offer know-how and provide new technologies for efficient tracking and management of inventory, assets, equipment and people can be crucial for creating leaner workflows and faster business processes. Caretag operates all over Europe and are specialized in user-friendly, customizable solutions, which significantly reduce costs and man-hours within the health care, construction and logistics sectors without requiring additional training for the staff.
Learn more about Caretag by visiting: www.caretag.se
Xerafy’s innovations have changed the price-performance ratio for RFID tags and made it possible for customers to track assets in a wide range of harsh environments. Xerafy provides read-on-metal tags that can be embedded directly into assets to meet a full range of needs for RFID asset tracking in the aerospace, industrial, data center, healthcare, energy and other industries. Xerafy is headquartered in Hong Kong and maintains U.S. sales and support offices in San Jose, Dallas and Minneapolis, and additional offices in the U.K. and China.
Learn more about Xerafy by visiting: www.xerafy.com