Safety Comes First
When it comes to patient identification, errors can potentially pose a threat to a patient's life. For this reason, the University of Göttingen Hospital uses label printers from Zebra Technologies to produce barcode labels that accurately identify patient samples and allow for laboratory tasks to be completed in a more efficient manner. Today, these labels are produced in advance, primarily for use with secondary test tube samples in order to meet the respective analytic requirements.
In the past, all work orders were printed out well in advance. However, these were often no longer up to date when they were finally needed for use. "Today, our daily lab routines are really built around label printers from Zebra," Dr. Hillmar Luthe explains.
Mobile Labelling at a Patient's Bedside
In the future, in order to be able to complete tasks directly at a patient's bedside that currently can only be completed at centrally-located work stations, they would like to use mobile label printers which communicate wirelessly. Both conventional and Zebra QL 220™ mobile label printers are now undergoing parallel field testing. "Thus far, our experiences with Zebra printers have all been very positive. This is why we elected to participate in field testing to find out more about printing in a WLAN environment," explains Ernst Münster, Managing Director of ixmid.
Field trials are currently being performed in two wards and one outpatient clinic. All three are testing conventional stationary products. For comparison purposes, another ward has started to use wireless LAN technology. The goal is to investigate whether work processes can actually be organized in a more efficient manner. After all, notebooks and tablet PCs have all been equipped with WLAN interfaces on a standard basis.
Those participating in the pilot study are able to make direct use of the application software. Depending on which specific tests are necessary, the program recommends printing either only one label or multiple labels. As a result, the exact quantity of labels required for the actual samples is printed. Each and every label also has a barcode that contains information in a coded form, such as order number and material identification. The patient's last name, first name and date of birth are also printed adjacent to the barcode. This helps prevent errors from occurring.