NHS may use RFID to prevent medical equipment theft

Medical Government/ NHS related news

The National Health Service (NHS) is reportedly investigating the potential of radio frequency identification tags (RFID) as a solution to the theft of medical equipment.

According to Silicon.com, 11 NHS hospital trusts have reported thefts of diagnostic equipment worth more than ?10,000 in the last year alone.

A Department of Health spokesman told the website: "We are actively exploring the options for making use of new radio frequency technology to track and trace high value pieces of NHS equipment.

"The theft of such equipment is deplorable and diverts much needed resources away from patient care. That is why the NHS takes these thefts extremely seriously and is working to ensure that NHS resources are safeguarded in order to make the standard of clinical care available to patients as high as possible."

Earlier this month it was announced that the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust is currently undertaking a trail using RFID tags to identify patients.

The ?300,000 pilot will see patients given RFID-tagged wristbands containing a digital picture and personal information.

The information will then be available to access on PCs in the wards, pre-operation rooms and operating theatres. Doctors and Nurses will also carry PDAs on which they can gain access to the information.

© Adfero Ltd

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