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Siemens develops new real-time Asset Management and Tracking system

Siemens Healthcare USA : 10 April, 2008  (New Product)
Siemens Healthcare has developed its Asset Management and Tracking (AMT) system to enable healthcare personnel to monitor the location of medical devices in real-time
Siemens' helps hospitals provide better patient care, reduce costs, improve workflow, and remain compliant. AMT provides information on the location of medical devices via a Web portal or pocket PC. Each product in the facility is tagged with the Ekahau WiFi RTLS (Real-Time Location System) tag. When coupled with Archibus an integrated suite of applications, the information about the product's location is transmitted through a WiFi network to the ARCHIBUS Executive Information System, creating a 360-degree view of the facility's assets and equipment while maintaining historical use records.

'Misplaced equipment is a very common, and an often overlooked, problem at hospitals that negatively impacts several aspects of day-to-day hospital activity,' said Rick Legleiter, senior vice president, customer service, Siemens Medical Solutions USA. 'To address this issue, Siemens developed an easily customised tagging system that delivers total transparency to managers and administrators - freeing up more of their time to provide care to patients.'

Siemens' AMT focuses on many issues that result from lost or stolen assets:

- Patient Care. One major challenge in delivering quality healthcare is a hospital's ability to have the right resources at the right time in the right place. Finding portable equipment quickly can be a struggle. In the ER, especially, the time spent looking for an available bed or the closest infusion pump can mean increased risk to a patient. By tagging all equipment, personnel can locate items immediately from a pocket PC or web portal.

- Cost Reduction. According to healthcare compliance company HCPro, hospitals can lose nearly $1 million a year in medical equipment to theft alone. Siemens' AMT helps a facility reduce costs by improving equipment delivery time and utilisation, thereby eliminating the need to continually rent or buy more to replace lost or stolen items.

- Workflow. Improved workflow is one of the top priorities of hospitals. Equipment that can't easily be found cannot be serviced quickly. For example, studies show that 38 percent of a clinical engineer's time is spent locating the equipment. Siemens' AMT means more time can be dedicated to maintaining equipment uptime.

- Regulatory. According to a Government Accountability Office survey of six Veterans Affairs medical centers, the percentage of property items that could not be accounted for ranged from 38 percent to 87 percent.

Asset and Management Tracking ensures that the hospital is prepared at any given time to face an auditor's scrutiny of record keeping and process compliance.

Siemens' AMT combines the power of Siemens healthcare expertise with the integrated suite of applications from Archibus, as well as the Ekahau wireless tracking technology, into a comprehensive, seamless system. Ekahau, the only software-based real-time location system, is a wireless radiofrequency solution that continually monitors and reports locations of assets.

Ekahau also generates actionable information, such as how many individual pieces of a particular equipment type are in one area of the hospital, which pieces are rented, and when each piece of equipment was last serviced. Ekahau's patented radiofrequency modelling technology uses standard WiFi access points and tags so no proprietary infrastructure is needed. Any WiFi network can function as the backbone and sensor network for the system.

Archibus, one of the world's foremost infrastructure and facilities management solutions, offers applications that address all aspects of facilities and infrastructure management. An Archibus server links the information silos and diverse applications that support people, processes, places, and physical assets into a comprehensive integrated solution. Because the Archibus suite is designed with a flexible, modular structure, facilities can assemble the combination of applications that best suits an organization's requirements.
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