Wendy Werblin, Product Lead, Healthcare Solutions, Impinj
Hospitals are increasingly looking to RFID to help solve some of the operational challenges in healthcare. RFID solutions can provide organizations with in-depth information about the identity, location and authenticity of important assets, devices, medical supplies and people as they move around their facilities – ultimately with the goal of increasing efficiency and reducing costs. And, RFID is making life a lot more efficient for organizations and safer for the patients who depend on them. What is RFID technology and how is it used? In this article, we’ll take a look at six things that are not commonly known about RFID.
But first, how does RFID work?
There are two main types of RFID: active RFID, which requires battery power, and RAIN RFID, which is battery-free (passive), wireless technology that uses a single, global standard (UHF Gen 2v2 or ISO/IEC 18000-63). In this article, we’ll take a look at RAIN RFID.
A RAIN RFID tag is attached to or embedded in an item. This tag contains a unique number that identifies that item. RAIN RFID readers and gateways wirelessly power and communicate with these tags and provide the connectivity between tag data and the hospital systems and software that needs the information. Readers can be held by a person, embedded in cabinets, installed in doorways, hallways or ceilings to keep track of tagged items in large spaces.
Data from the tags is sent to a software application that analyzes the information and applies an action or designated business process. For example, once a hospital staffer moves a tagged IV pump into a designated room, a biomedical team would then be notified to pick up the pump for cleaning. By tagging all the equipment needed for a surgery, surgical staff can validate that the necessary equipment is in the room before the surgery begins.