Using clinical information technology based on the application of RFID systems, what can the business model be?
—Ralph (West Central Africa)
There are two types of radio frequency identification technologies used in a clinical setting. Active RFID systems are generally employed for the real-time location of mobile medical equipment (oxygen pumps, gurneys, wheelchairs and so forth), while passive RFID systems are typically used to manage inventories of drugs, implants and other items.
Active RFID systems either are used as standalone systems, enabling nurses and others to find required equipment in real time, or are integrated with a hospital’s existing materials-management system. Sometimes, active systems are employed for bed management and to ensure that patients are billed for equipment used. In general, the value of an active RFID-based real-time location system is to improve asset-utilization rates, lower capital expenditures on new equipment, increase bed turnover or capture billing data.
Passive systems can also be utilized as standalone systems to manage inventory levels, but the data is generally uploaded to existing inventory-management systems. RFID simply allows personnel to locate inventory items more quickly, and to perform counts quickly and accurately. I hope this answers your question.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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