The hospital has a lot of mobile high-value medical equipment, and to date has tagged many of them—mostly ventilators, defibrillators, beds, IV pumps and stretchers. The hospital's priority was to make it easy for the new facility's staff to locate equipment when required for patients, as well as for maintenance and cleaning. Beds, for example, vary in size and style, based on a particular patient's needs and size.
In addition, the biomedical department conducts monthly maintenance on its equipment, and personnel must search for each item in order to get the work done. Not only can some assets take days to locate, but some are never found and end up missing the maintenance schedule entirely.
The hospital uses RFID tags and software to help its biomedical staff determine which items require servicing. The solution is integrated with the system, so that when workers review which items require maintenance, they can also be directed to the number of the room in which each asset is located.
In the long term, the hospital also hopes to provide RFID tags to all patients and workers, in order to track the movements of people throughout the facility. This, the hospital notes, would make patient care more efficient, and enable the facility to identify bottlenecks or areas in need of improvement, based on the amount of time patients may await service, or that employees are delayed in performing specific tasks, based on their location data.
For this hospital, one advantage of installing the software infrastructure at the time that its new facility was built is the ease with which the hospital can now expand the system, simply by applying additional tags to assets, or by providing tags to patients and staff members.