The United States Air Force Surgeon General’s office has announced the selection of Shipcom Wireless Inc. to review the current use of RFID technologies throughout the Air Force Medical Services and introduce pilot RFID systems at Keesler Air Force Base’s medical center in Mississippi. The multi-million dollar, multi-year contract will most likely expand the Air Force’s use of RFID beyond traditional asset management.
In a press release, David Baker, a clinical engineer with the Air Force Surgeon General’s office said the project, “Expands from just asset tracking to tracking lab specimens, medications and possibly patients. When we first presented the concept and potential applications of RFID technology to the Air Force Surgeon General, he quickly saw potential value on the clinical side.”
The project will begin with a general assessment of current use of RFID at Air Force medical centers, using Shipcom’s Hospital Operational & Clinical Assessment Model and focusing on process bottlenecks and technology challenges. Shipcom will then offer recommendations on how best to apply RFID and related technologies to improve patient care and make clinical processes more efficient. Model applications based on these suggestions will be tested at Keesler Air Force Base before expanding their use throughout the medical services.