Previous Health Care Events
Conference AgendaHospitals across North America are achieving real benefits—improved patient outcomes and/or a financial return on investment—from using RFID to monitor patients and assets, collect information automatically and reduce medical errors. At this event, you will learn about the way hospitals and health care providers are using RFID today as well as insights into how to move from one-off applications to an infrastructure approach to RFID.
December 4, 2013
|8:30 AM||Welcome Coffee|
|9:00 AM||Opening Remarks|
Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
|9:15 AM||Medical Center Tracks Asset Locations Via Passive EPC Tags|
A 375-bed hospital is deploying a new solution that employs passive RFID tags for tracking assets. The system costs considerably less than RTLS solutions utilizing active radio frequency identification tags—typically, a few thousand dollars a month—and provides an opportunity for hospitals to ramp up their RFID application slowly, as their budget allows and use cases become apparent. Staff members are using a tablet PC with a bar-code scanner to read the bar code printed on an item's RFID label, selecting the location from which they are taking the assets, chosen from a list on the tablet's screen. The worker then takes the object to another location, such as the cleaning room, and again scans its tag's bar code, indicating where it is being relocated. That information is transmitted via a Wi-Fi connection to the cloud-based software, where the asset's location data is then updated. Learn how the system enables staff members to locate equipment more easily, and acts as a deterrent to hoarding, since hidden items can now be pinpointed.
• How the staff can detect that an asset is located within a patient's room without having to disturb that person by entering his or her room, since the reader can interrogate tags from up to 15 or 20 feet away
• How the system has enabled the hospital to achieve an average utilization of 79 percent compared to industry averages of 35 to 40 percent
|10:00 AM||Managing Medication Administration With NFC RFID|
An 800-bed hospital is testing a Near Field Communication (NFC) RFID system that enables health-care staff members to manage the administration of medication at a patient's bedside. The solution, developed by an interdisciplinary project team, consists of a Google Nexus 7 tablet and a software app that interprets RFID tag data regarding patients and the medications they receive. The system works with passive NFC RFID tags attached to medications, to patients' wristbands and to staff members' ID badges, thereby enabling a user to read the tags and link the patient, caretaker and medication in the app. Learn how the firm performed initial testing of the system within a medical-simulation environment, using mock patients (mannequins) and comparing its efficiency against that of the traditional bar-code solution, before conducting a second pilot on live patients at the hospital.
• How the solution provides more verification of which medications are administered and also enables personnel to enter information into the software while at a patient's bedside
• Future opportunities for financial and efficiency improvements
|10:45 AM||Networking Break|
|11:15 AM||Improving Safety With RFID|
A 150-bed hospital with a medical staff of more than 180, as well as 1,000 employees, has installed a real-time location system (RTLS) employing Wi-Fi active radio frequency identification tags to enhance the safety of staff members and track temperatures within its pharmacy's department coolers. The firm installed the system within its behavioral health unit (where psychiatric patients are treated) to replace an outdated proprietary RFID system for monitoring staff safety. Learn how the facility found that the solution could be utilized for other applications as well, beginning with tracking temperatures, in order to reduce the amount of time that workers spend monitoring and recording the temperatures of medication refrigerators, and to collect more accurate electronic data that could be used to fulfill the Joint Commission's reporting requirements.
• How the system is saving the staff time previously spent documenting temperatures several times each day with a clipboard
• Future uses, including plans to begin providing RFID wristbands to patients of its long-term-care ward, many of whom suffer from dementia or Alzheimer's, to detect when an individual may be wandering beyond the area where he or she should be
|12:00 PM||RFID Enables Ambulance Crews to Manage Onboard Equipment|
A company that services and repairs medical capital equipment, such as stretchers and other patient-lifting equipment and beds for the health-care and EMS markets, is providing an RFID-based solution for its clients to track its assets' locations. At hospitals or EMS centers, although software typically tracked equipment's maintenance and inspection history, finding assets due for service was an arduous task. The firm's employees have often had to walk around hospitals from floor to floor, searching for items such as specific hospital beds. Learn how the solution helps an emergency medical service (EMS) provider's staff to quickly locate items requiring maintenance or inspection, and also helps crews, such as ambulance drivers or other emergency responders, to ensure that they do not leave their often-expensive equipment behind when going out on a call.
• Why the tracking of equipment is even more complicated in the emergency services sector than it is at hospitals, because the items travel in ambulances and other rescue vehicles, and are often unloaded in the field and then reloaded by employees
• How the solution displays a red indictor light for missing items on the onboard computer screen, enabling the driver to retrieve it before leaving the scene
|12:45 PM||Lunch Break |
|2:15 PM||RFID in Health Care Panel|
Health-care facilities are faced with many choices when it comes to implementing an RFID asset-tracking system, including passive high-frequency (HF) and ultrahigh-frequency (UHF), active 455 MHz systems, Wi-Fi, ZigBee, ultra-wideband (UWB) systems and ultrasound technology. In this session, leading technology experts will discuss some of the key issues that health-care providers need to understand when making technology choices.
|3:00 PM||RFID Helps Hospital Maintain Patient Safety, Reduce Labor Costs|
A regional health-care facility is installing RFID sensors to monitor the temperatures of refrigerators, blood coolers, blanket warmers and other heating or cooling appliances within the new 10-story tower that it is currently constructing. Temperature fluctuations can have a damaging effect on such products as medications, blood or food, and can constitute a safety hazard. Currently, the hospital is utilizing the system to track the temperatures of 641 heating or cooling units throughout its existing facility, every five to 15 minutes. The hospital utilizes the technology to diagnose and reduce temperature fluctuations within the coolers and heaters, bringing the number of daily alarms from an average of 50 to 60 alerts per day for 400 units, down to 7.8 alerts daily for all 641 units. Learn how the frequent automated readings and alerts have improved safety, while also reducing manual labor costs. Whereas the nursing staff previously had to check temperatures within all cooling and heating units and record the results once per shift, that process is now automated.
• How the system has provided greater visibility into temperature readings, enabling workers to identify and resolve problems before products become spoiled and need to be destroyed, or before a cooling unit requires replacement
• The use of an alerting system to provide notification if the temperature range does not fall within the preset accepted threshold taking place, sending a text message or e-mail to the appropriate individuals
|3:45 PM||Networking Break|
|4:00 PM||Using RFID to Efficiently Track Assets, Staff and Food|
When one of the country's top medical schools opened its new 1.6 million-square-foot facility with two 12-story towers last year, the building featured a real-time location system (RTLS) that enables the hospital to monitor the locations of hundreds of nurses, as well as thousands of pumps, wheelchairs and other high-value moving equipment. The facility is also utilizing the RTLS technology to track the movements of approximately 400 carts that are automatically transported via towlines to deliver food from the hospital's kitchen to patient units located throughout the building. Learn how the firm has leveraged its investment, enabling the hospital to know the locations of its equipment and employees, as well as automated carts transporting food, to improve efficiency and save money.
• How the system is able to issue an alert without having to broadcast announcements via the public-address system
• Using the system to automate the delivery of food carts
|4:45 PM||RFID Improves Management of Emergency Medicine Kits|
The pharmacy department of a 750-bed hospital is employing an RFID-based solution to aid in the stocking of medication kits transported around the hospital for use with patients in the event of emergencies. Emergency medications are used for patients who require immediate intervention. Each kit comes with approximately 25 to 50 items, and is sealed until one of those supplies is required, at which time the kit's plastic covering is removed and the necessary items are taken out. Once the kit is no longer needed, it is then returned to the pharmacy, where staff members must determine what has been removed, and thus what must be replaced. Through the use of an RFID reader station, the facility is able to identify which medications are loaded onto a crash cart's tray, which require replenishment, and those approaching their expiration dates. As an added benefit, the facility has reduced the amount of time employees must spend loading each emergency medication tray, from approximately 20 minutes down to less than 5 minutes. Learn how the system automates the process, and how it is successfully reducing the risk of manual errors as trays are loaded.
• How the use of RFID reduced labor costs, since the manual system required two workers to check every kit for errors
• How the solution has afforded the facility a better understanding of the hospital's inventory
|5:30 PM||Closing Remarks|
|5:35 PM||Conference Concludes|
See Complete Agenda »
All conference sessions are subject to change, and RFID Journal reserves the right to alter dates, programs and speakers at any time, as circumstances dictate. Sessions without assigned speakers indicate a target topic; every effort will be made to ensure that a program of equivalent standard and value is available.
RFID in Health Care is produced by RFID Journal, the World's RFID Authority.
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