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RFID Tracks Blood at Australia's Liverpool Hospital
NSW Health Pathology, which operates the hospital's blood lab, is using the technology to determine how long blood products remain outside of refrigeration, and to ensure that no incorrect matches are made and no spoiled products are used.
Mar 23, 2016—
NSW Health Pathology, an Australian public pathology organization that operates five clinical and scientific networks, is using radio frequency identification technology at a blood bank it runs at Liverpool Hospital, near Sydney, to track blood products from the time they leave storage refrigerators until when they are returned to storage or used for a patient.
The solution includes a locking SpaceCode SmartFridge, installed in the hospital's surgical suite, to identify RFID-tagged blood products stored within it. The system not only helps to ensure that each unit of blood is given to the correct patient, but also that it is not used after an extended time out of refrigeration.
Blood needs to be stored at 2 to 6 degrees Celsius (35.6 to 42.8 degrees Fahrenheit), and must never exceed 10 degrees Celsius (50 degrees Fahrenheit) if it is to be considered safe for use.
"We need to be assured that the returned blood is safe to use, and require cold chain records to confirm that it has been appropriately stored," says Tony Greenfield, principal hospital scientist at the NSW Health Pathology's Liverpool Blood Bank Laboratory.
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