Is RFID Being Considered for Tracking Narcotics?

By RFID Journal

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I believe radio frequency identification could be one solution to the problem of narcotic diversion in emergency medical services. Are any groups in the health-care industry pushing for the use of RFID tags to track narcotics used in pre-hospital care?




No organizations are pushing for RFID use for this specific application at present. However, I believe the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sees the technology as a way to reduce counterfeiting and diversion of all drugs, particularly narcotics.

The health-care industry is moving toward the adoption of Electronic Product Code (EPC) standards for drug tracking, as EPC technology allows for the serialization of items, as well as the ability to capture that information and use it to populate drug pedigrees. I think this standard, once it becomes more widely adopted, could be used to track narcotics in pre-hospital care.

—Mark Roberti, Editor, RFID Journal