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Location! Location! Location technologies are improving NHS care
Date:5/6/2008

London 1st May 2008: Some of the UKs leading experts in location technologies confirmed this week that applications such as RFID in hospitals are already improving the efficiency and quality of patient care. But they also warn that compatibility problems between hardware and software applications, and a lack of joined up thinking from technology companies mean that the NHS is not benefiting as much as it could.

Speakers from the UK governments Location and Timing Knowledge Transfer Network, the Mobile Data Association and the Royal National Institute of Blind People gathered to discuss the role these technologies play in healthcare and assisted living.

Some successful examples given were:

  • RFID tags worn by hospital patients that store their picture and medical records so doctors, nurses and surgeons can retrieve the correct data before administering treatment or medication. Examples include the Safe Surgery System currently in use at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital.
  • Asset tracking For the location of valuable items such as crash trolleys, infusion pumps, beds and wheelchairs. Applications are in the pilot stage in a number of hospitals where active Wi-Fi tags are attached to equipment. Return on investment is based on reducing inventory and time spent locating equipment. Examples of this technology of companies using this technology include Airetrack and Pango.
  • Security for babies in maternity units prevention of abduction. Tamper proof active UHF tags are attached to new born babies linked to UHF antennae and door security systems to prevent unauthorised movement of children. Examples include X-Tag and ELPAS.
  • Security of patients with dementia. Active UHF tags worn by patients where location can be determined by RSSI to strategically placed UHF antennae. Staff can be alerted if patients move away from their zone. Examples include X-tag and Radianse.
  • Drug companies are already tag
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Contact: Jim Sutton
jim@proofcommunication.com
084-568-01867
National Physical Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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