RFID-enabled blood tracking system now in hospital phase

Milwaukee, Wis., February 6, 2017 – BloodCenter of Wisconsin, part of Versiti, and Fresenius Kabi, have launched a pilot program at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin using radio frequency identification technology (RFID) to digitally track blood usage and inventory. Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin is the first pediatric hospital in the country to use RFID in the area of transfusion medicine, the hospital said. Fresenius Kabi is a global health care company that specializes in medicines and technologies for infusion, transfusion and clinical nutrition.

The project involves the use of specialized RFID tags applied to blood bags prior to shipment to hospitals. These tags can be tracked automatically as the blood moves through the hospital, and to the point at which it is used to treat patients. This process allows for real-time information designed to help health care professionals optimize the availability of their blood supply.

The use of RFID allows for the sharing of blood component inventory data easily and quickly between blood centers and hospitals.

“This innovative approach to tracking our hospital’s blood supply will provide visibility to the location, usage and inventory status of our blood products,” said Jason Jarzembowski, MD, PhD, medical director of the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin laboratory. “We can better manage our blood supply and plan for what is needed – optimizing the use of the life-saving gifts by blood donors.”

The RFID technology electronically tracks the blood from the time it leaves BloodCenter of Wisconsin, to the hospital’s transfusion service area, and on to use of the products. Children’s Hospital and BloodCenter can jointly look at the movement of products to better inform immediate need and inventory status.

“Getting the right blood products to the right patient more efficiently helps to reduce costs, which is a critical priority in health care today,” said Dean Gregory, president, Medical Devices, for Fresenius Kabi in North America. “We call this technology ‘CompoTrace’ and it’s designed specifically to help improve the vital supply chain of care between blood centers, hospitals and patients.”

The CompoTrace pilot program at BloodCenter of Wisconsin and Children’s Hospital began in October 2016 and will conclude in February 2017. Fresenius Kabi is planning similar projects at other hospitals in 2017.

BloodCenter of Wisconsin spearheaded the use of RFID technology in non-pediatric transfusion medicine environments in 2006 under a National Institutes of Health grant.

“Our hope is that we can help to pave the way for the use of RFID technology to enhance the service blood centers provide to hospitals across the country,” said BloodCenter of Wisconsin CEO Jackie Fredrick. “This project speaks to our focus on innovation and collaboration and is just one example of how our partnerships support patient care through ground-breaking advancements in transfusion medicine.”

About BloodCenter of Wisconsin
BloodCenter of Wisconsin, part of Versiti, is a not-for-profit organization that specializes in blood services, organ, tissue and marrow donation, diagnostic testing, medical services and leading-edge research. BloodCenter of Wisconsin is the exclusive provider of blood to hospitals in 30 Wisconsin counties, as well as to hospitals and patients across the country. BloodCenter of Wisconsin advances patient care by delivering life-saving solutions grounded in unparalleled medical and scientific expertise. For more information, visit www.bcw.edu.

About Versiti
Versiti is a strategic affiliation of successful health care organizations whose vision is to improve the health of patients as the national leader in innovative transfusion solutions for health care systems. Working together, Versiti offers hospitals a more comprehensive range of services, including transfusion medicine, transplantation, stem cell and cellular therapies, hematology, oncology and genomics. At Versiti, they are passionate about improving the lives of their patients and hospital partners. Versiti’s expertise and resources lead to new products, solutions and services to meet patient and hospital needs. For more information, visit www.Versiti.org.

About Fresenius Kabi
Fresenius Kabi (www.fresenius-kabi.us) is a global health care company that specializes in medicines and technologies for infusion, transfusion, and clinical nutrition. The company’s products and services are used to help care for critically and chronically ill patients. The company’s U.S. headquarters is in Lake Zurich, Illinois. The company’s global headquarters is in Bad Homburg, Germany.

About Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Children's Hospital of Wisconsin is an independent health care system dedicated solely to the health and well-being of children. The hospital, with locations in Milwaukee and Neenah, Wisconsin, is recognized as one of the leading pediatric health care centers in the United States. It is ranked in all 10 specialty areas in U.S. News & World Report's 2016-17 Best Children's Hospitals report. Children's provides primary care, specialty care, urgent care, emergency care, community health services, foster and adoption services, child and family counseling, child advocacy services and family resource centers.

 

Media Contact
Fresenius Kabi
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BloodCenter of Wisconsin
Fay Spano
414-937-6124
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