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Versus Introduces Automated, Real-Time Hand Hygiene Compliance Solution
Date:6/9/2009

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich., June 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Hand Hygiene Compliance (HHC) is paramount to patient safety and the reduction of hospital acquired infections -- but monitoring adherence to HHC policies has traditionally been done through observation, which is difficult and inaccurate, if not downright impossible. In fact, on their website, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement notes "Experts estimate [emphasis added] that health practitioners comply with recommended hand hygiene procedures less than 50 percent of the time..." and that nearly 2 million patients develop hospital acquired infections each year. Of those, 80,000 will die. The primary culprit? "The contaminated hands of health care workers."

That's a rather bleak outlook, especially when the answer is as simple as WASH YOUR HANDS. The Joint Commission recommends a 90% compliance rate. How does one measure compliance? The 2009 monograph published by the Joint Commission, Measuring Hand Hygiene Adherence: Overcoming the Challenges, provides an estimate that observation audits capture only 0.12% of hand washing opportunities. Versus Technology, Inc. has introduced a Hand Hygiene Compliance Solution to automatically measure instances of both hand hygiene compliance and non-compliance to help hospitals protect patient safety and meet regulatory and internal hand hygiene policies.

The Hand Hygiene Compliance Solution from Versus includes unique Infrared (IR) and RFID badges for caregivers. These small, lightweight badges communicate with similar IR-RFID tags placed on automated soap dispensers. When a badge-wearing staff member approaches the soap dispensing unit, the tag on the dispenser reads the badge, records who is at the hand washing station and when and where the activity is taking place. At the time of hand washing, the caregiver receives an audible acknowledgement that the Versus system has captured this HHC event. The event is recorded and available for reporting and quality improvement purposes.

Because the system is based on highly accurate real-time locating technology -- available only through Versus Technology's patented IR and RFID locating system -- it provides accurate, unbiased data for continual process improvement. Using the Versus system, hospitals can target additional education to units or shifts that may be underperforming. The real-time alerts also provide caregivers with the opportunity to self-correct before non-compliant events occur, protecting both patients and their caregivers.

"It is very important to Versus Technology that we provide solutions that not only reduce the potential for hospital acquired infections, but do so in a way that increases hospital staff efficiency. At the same time," explains Henry Tenarvitz, Chief Intellectual Property Officer of Versus, "these systems must be priced at a level that most hospitals can afford. Our commitment to making compliance systems affordable has driven Versus to discover ways to leverage existing nurse call infrastructure to control installation costs." By adding compliance functionality to a pre-existing nurse call system, hospitals can control the cost of deploying the compliance system and, at the same time, increase staff efficiency. This in turn helps hospitals deliver high quality healthcare to a greater number of patients.

"We do not want to diminish the impact hospital acquired infections have on patients and their families," Tenarvitz says, "but we also do not want to ignore their effect on the hospital. It's bad press all the way around -- from patient satisfaction, to Press Ganey, to its standing in the community, to potential lawsuits. On the financial side, one also has to consider that hospital acquired infections are not reimbursed, so when they occur, they represent a significant and unnecessary non-pay event. It's hard to measure the savings as a result of preventing a hospital acquired infection, but we know it's in the hundreds of millions."

Versus offers a complete suite of Enterprise Workflow and Automation Solutions, including patient, staff and asset tracking, bed management and enhancement of existing systems such as nurse call. The Versus IR-RFID Solution is exclusively endorsed the American Hospital Association as a key component of its Patient Flow Platform. Versus was also recently awarded the Frost & Sullivan Market Leadership Award for Healthcare RTLS. To learn more about this and other infection control measures available through Versus, please visit www.versustech.com.

About Versus Technology, Inc.

Versus Technology, Inc. is the leader in the development and sale of context-aware real-time location systems (RTLS) used for enterprise patient tracking, bed management and asset tracking to improve patient flow and caregiver/patient communications in hospitals, clinics and long-term care facilities. Versus also develops dual infrared and Active RFID tags and other location tracking hardware to make locating systems more precise, security systems more intelligent, nurse call systems automatic, and hospital asset tracking systems more efficient. Indoor positioning through Versus' RTLS enhances existing hospital software and patient care systems with real-time, reliable bed-level location information. The patented Versus IR and Active RFID patient and asset tracking system is exclusively endorsed by the American Hospital Association and is a key component of their Patient Flow Platform -- which includes a select group of vendors that provide proven solutions to enhance patient flow and improve patient safety. (www.versustech.com; Pink Sheets: VSTI)

Safe Harbor Provision

This document may contain forward-looking statements relating to future events, such as the development of new products, the commencement of production, or the future financial performance of the Company. These statements fall within the meaning of forward-looking information as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are subject to a number of important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially including, but not limited to, economic, competitive, governmental, and technological factors affecting the Company's markets and market growth rates, products and their rate of commercialization, services, prices and adequacy of financing, and other factors. The Company undertakes no obligation to update, amend, or clarify forward-looking statements, whether because of new information, future events, or otherwise.


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SOURCE Versus Technology, Inc.
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