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Containers Expo Blog Authors: Elizabeth White, Automic Blog, Adrian Bridgwater, Liz McMillan, Bob Gourley

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WaveMark Solution selected to Track Supplies at 70 VA Cath Labs in Real Time

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has selected HP Enterprise Services and subcontractor, WaveMark, to deliver a $543 million Real-Time Location System (RTLS) solution to VA facilities across the nation. Other HP subcontractors under the RTLS contract include: Intelligent InSites, Centrak, OATSystems and Censis Technologies. HP will deliver program management, operations planning, implementation management, hardware and software and site readiness preparation.

WaveMark RFID Real-Time SmartCabinets (Photo: Business Wire)

WaveMark RFID Real-Time SmartCabinets (Photo: Business Wire)

The VA National RTLS solution deployment is part of the VA’s multi-site, multi-year effort to bring together different locating technologies into a seamless Digital Hospital. This fully integrated solution tracks mobile assets, consumable assets, and sterile product processing. The goal of the innovative solution is to ensure patient safety, reduce costs, and streamline workflow across the VA healthcare system. WaveMark provides the consumable asset tracking solution in the Cardiac Catheterization and Electrophysiology Labs that integrates seamlessly with the overall Digital Hospital solution provided to the VA by HP.

“The quality of veteran care and improving the delivery of our healthcare services are the driving forces behind implementing the RTLS solution,” said Kimberly Brayley, director, RTLS Project Management Office, Veteran Health Administration. “Leveraging state-of-the-art technology allows VA to decrease operational costs and increase efficiencies, satisfaction and quality healthcare delivery.”

The WaveMark solution is already being used to track supplies in the Cardiac Catheterization and Electrophysiology Labs in the Ann Arbor and Detroit, MI, VA Medical Centers (VAMC) and will be expanded to 70 hospital catheterization labs across the National VA provider network over the next 5 years. WaveMark combines RFID “smart cabinets” that read their contents automatically with RFID enabled point-of-care stations in procedure rooms to capture usage. WaveMark’s sophisticated supply chain software helps patient safety by improving product availability and alerting on expired and recalled items that are on-hand. WaveMark also reduces costs by right sizing inventory and improving charge capture as well as streamlining workflow.

The WaveMark solution went live for the first time in the Ann Arbor VAMC in February 2012. “What the system has really given us is better communication which leads to the Veteran having the right item, in the right place, at the right time. This is everyone’s responsibility and that’s what it comes down to,” reports Angie Hernandez, Logistics and Supply Manager.

“Essentially it’s going to eliminate all these duplicative work streams and eliminate user error,” says Dr. Paul Varosy, cardiologist at Denver VAMC. “Not only are we going to end up with more efficient care, but also more robust documentation for what we are using and more efficient process for managing items that are on the shelf. The impact will be felt as powerfully as if each lab were to find a whole cabinet full of items we didn’t know were going to expire.”

Some manufacturers are beginning to apply RFID tags to their products before they are shipped to the VA which greatly simplifies the receiving process. High-value supplies are easier than ever to access. Staff gain visibility into inventory and are able to see all items that are stored, removed, returned, and nearing expiration. By running more meaningful reports, staffs (including doctors) gain insight into usage, ideal par levels, supply chain efficiencies, procedure-specific cost, and doctor preferences.

According to Jacob Bender, VISN 11 RTLS Healthcare Technology Manager, “Since February 2012, the VISN 11 Healthcare Network has been leveraging WaveMark’s industry-leading smart cabinet technology. The VA staff in our Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories and in Logistics are enthusiastically adopting the new system. We have begun to identify opportunities for improvement in our Cath Lab supply chain and we are finding new ways to optimize the delivery of veterans’ healthcare through high-frequency RFID equipment and intelligent software.”

“The VA continues to make improvements in patient care by supporting enhancements and innovation in healthcare IT at numerous Veteran medical facilities and hospitals nationwide,” said Debbie Elgot, RTLS solutions portfolio manager, U.S. Public Sector, HP Enterprise Services. “As the strategic systems integrator for the National RTLS project, we are extremely pleased with the early RFID solution results achieved at the Michigan VAMCs with WaveMark, and look forward to extending those results across the nation.”

“WaveMark’s best-in-class real-time healthcare supply chain solution and market leadership position were instrumental to being selected by HP and by the VA as a critical part of this important program to better serve our veterans. We are excited to be a part of this innovative program that is quickly becoming a model for the industry,” says John Wass, CEO of WaveMark.

About WaveMark

WaveMark is the market leader in Real-Time Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation. WaveMark solutions drive innovation from point-of-manufacture to point-of-care enhancing patient safety and regulatory compliance, while improving the economics of healthcare.

WaveMark solutions leverage RFID, cloud, and mobile technologies to bring quality, financial, and operational transformation into the healthcare supply chain. From real-time smart cabinets in hospitals to mobile apps for global medical suppliers, WaveMark’s flexible technology portfolio solves critical challenges in healthcare.

For more information go to www.wavemark.com.

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