Overcoming the Barriers to RFID Adoption in Healthcare

The latest ASHP Foundation report, “RFID TECHNOLOGY IN MEDICATION-USE SYSTEMS: CONSIDERATIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS TO ADVANCE IMPLEMENTATION,” dives into the state of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology in healthcare, shedding light on the promising opportunities it presents, hurdles, and solutions for broader adoption. The report identified numerous barriers, from a lack of RFID-embedded labels at the manufacturer level to interoperability issues across technology platforms. This blog focuses on the obstacles from the report’s findings and explores how organizations like the UnitVisID Alliance are crucial in navigating these challenges.

RFID promises to revolutionize the healthcare industry by enhancing medication safety and streamlining processes. The report highlights its capacity to manage drug shortages, recall medications efficiently, and seamlessly integrate data into the Electronic Health Record (EHR) at the unit-of-use level, ensuring accurate inventory and patient records. (Read: Revolutionizing Healthcare: RFID and its Game-Changing Use Cases in Hospital Systems)

The consensus is clear: RFID technology harbors the potential to boost the efficiency and safety of medication-use systems significantly.

Barriers to RFID Adoption

However, widespread adoption faces significant hurdles. Despite its potential, the adoption of RFID in healthcare is hampered by several challenges. According to the report:

  • Lack of medications tagged with RFID-embedded labels at the manufacturer level
  • Lack of interoperability across technology vendors
  • The substantial resources required for RFID tagging, quarantining, activating, and deploying
  • Lack of standardization in the information within an RFID tag and its placement

These barriers underscore the need for a concerted effort to address and overcome the obstacles to RFID integration within healthcare workflows.

UnitVisID Alliance: Addressing the Barriers with Collaboration

UnitVisID Alliance echoes these concerns, advocating for industry-wide collaboration to overcome these barriers (Read: Join the Revolution in Healthcare: Be a Part of UnitVisID Alliance). By referencing their insights, we understand the necessity of multi-vendor interoperability across all components and a network of members with experience in producing high-quality medication labeling. Our goal is to ensure the interoperability, performance, and reliability of RFID-tagged medications as they move through the supply chain — from manufacturing to pharmacies and ultimately to patient administration — while interacting with systems and software along the way to solve pharmacy issues and create better patient outcomes. This collective approach is crucial for advancing RFID’s implementation.

Membership in the Alliance is open to stakeholders across the entire pharmaceutical supply chain, including hospitals, healthcare organizations, pharmaceutical manufacturers, technology and automation vendors, inlay manufacturers, and label converters. Discover how membership can address workflow inefficiencies, hasten your products’ time to market, enhance patient outcomes, and much more. Join us in this pivotal movement towards a safer and more efficient healthcare future: https://www.unitvisid.com/membership/join/