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Australia's Bendigo Health Improves Efficiency Through RFID
The regional health-care provider is using AeroScout Wi-Fi tags to track patients and monitor the temperatures of supplies, and will soon implement an RFID-enabled staff-safety solution.
Dec 21, 2010—A real-time location system (RTLS) that employs radio frequency identification technology is helping a health-care provider based in Victoria, Australia, to track patients throughout its facility, as well as monitor the temperatures of medical supplies—and starting next month, it will also improve the safety of the hospital's staff.
Bendigo Health, the largest regional health-care provider in Victoria, first began rolling out the Wi-Fi-based solution in July 2010, to manage the flow of patients through its surgical wards. Last month, it expanded its use of the system to include temperature monitoring of pharmaceuticals and blood supplies, and in January 2011, it intends to roll out a staff-safety system for doctors and nurses.
The system, which operates on a standard Wi-Fi network and utilizes RFID tags and RTLS software provided by AeroScout, was chosen after Bendigo Health received funding to install Wi-Fi within its surgical theater.
Phil Coppin, Bendigo Health's information and communication technology (ICT) operations manager, says the health-care provider initially wanted to obtain better real-time data regarding theater and staff utilization in its perioperative suite, which handles up to 10,000 surgical procedures a year.
Bendigo Health's local ICT partner, Integrating Technology, recommended AeroScout and its Patient Flow solution because of AeroScout's experience in the health-care sector, particularly in Australia.
Upon arrival in the surgical theater, orthopedic patients are provided with an AeroScout tag that offers information on the patient's location and movement, thereby enabling staff members to ensure that scheduled procedures start on time, and that patients receive proper care.
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