Asset Tracking For Healthcare

RFiD Discovery can accurately track the location of mobile medical devices, cutting down valuable time spent by staff when locating equipment.

asset tracking hospital beds

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Improve asset visibility and utilisation, save capital expenditure and cut down time spent locating equipment

RFiD Discovery is successfully being used by many healthcare organisations and NHS trusts in the UK to track mobile medical devices and other assets including infusion pumps, syringe drivers, feeding devices, scanners, monitors, wheelchairs, mattresses and beds.

Why use RFID tracking 

The loss and underutilisation of mobile assets costs the healthcare sector millions of pounds each year.

Particularly in acute hospitals, typically large multi-floored sites with over 10,000 assets, it's a struggle to keep track of equipment with staff clocking up hours and miles just searching for unused devices or out of service equipment.

Improving visibility of the location of essential equipment can considerably improve operational performance.


Medical equipment library - tracking medical assets


• Accurate record of where medical assets are
• Fully integrated with asset management database
• Updating inventory records takes minutes instead of hours
• Improved management of contractors
• Improved patient safety by increased maintenance inspection rates
• Better asset utilisation means significantly reduced capital expenditure




How asset tracking works


The system

For accurate location tracking with RFiD Discovery, each high-value medical device is fitted with an active RFID tag which transmits its unique ID at pre-set intervals.


GS1 Compliance

In addition, passive RFID tags incorporating GS1 barcodes can be used to keep an inventory of all medical assets, including lower value items. This provides an asset identification system that complies with the most recent mandate from the UK Department of Health. RFID Discovery passive tags are fully GS1 compliant and, where used, replace standard asset labels.

asset location

Location data

Signals from active and passive RFID tags are picked up either by using a mobile reader or a network of fixed readers or both. Mobile readers can be either a hand-held PDA system fitted with a radio frequency (RF) reader or the specially equipped RFID Discovery trolley.


"It used to take us 4 days to audit 7 wards, with RFiD Discovery we can now do this in 30 minutes."
Simon Dawkins, Head of Medical Equipment Library, Cambridge University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


Data collection

As the medical engineer travels around the hospital using either the RFID Discovery trolley or hand-held PDA, the mobile reader performs equipment searches. With a read range of up to 20 meters it records the date, time and location when it receives a transmission from any tagged device.
Passive UHF tag read ranges are typically up to 11m with the trolley. This data can be immediately uploaded to the main database via a local wireless network or through a hard wired connection to a local work station. A web based application allows the user to interrogate a central database to see the last known location of an asset or generate a history report showing where an asset has been over a defined time frame.
This store of location information helps deliver improved asset visibility, to optimise utilisation and improve overall operational and financial performance. RFID Discovery can be integrated with any asset management database to avoid double entry of asset information. Hospitals can make use of existing wi-fi networks, but also have the option of installing additional readers in areas where there is insufficient wireless coverage.


Download our White Paper

The role of active and passive RFID as part of an effective medical device management system. Find out more.

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