Critical elements and lessons learnt from the implementation of an RFID-enabled healthcare management system in a medical organization

J Med Syst. 2011 Aug;35(4):657-69. doi: 10.1007/s10916-009-9403-5. Epub 2009 Dec 2.


Healthcare services are complex and life-critical. One mistake in any procedure may lead to irremediable consequences; numerous researchers, thus, introduce information and communication technology to improve quality of services and enhance patient safety by reducing the medical errors. Radio frequency identification (RFID) is considered as one of the emerging tool assist in meeting the challenges of the present situation. In recent years, RFID has been applied in medical organizations for the purpose of managing and tracking medical equipment, monitoring and identifying patients, ensuring that the right medication is given to the right patient, and preventing the use of counterfeit medicine. However, most of the existing literature focuses on demonstrating how RFID can benefit the healthcare industry, whereas little attention has been given to the management issues involved in constructing an RFID project in medical organizations. In this paper, an exploratory case study is conducted in a medical organization to illustrate the development framework and critical issues that should be taken into consideration in the preparation, implementation and maintenance stage of constructing such a project. All the experiences and results discussed in this paper offer valuable and useful insights to steer those who would like to start their journey using RFID in medical organizations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Equipment and Supplies
  • Health Services Administration*
  • Humans
  • Medical Errors / prevention & control
  • Medical Records
  • Organizational Case Studies
  • Quality of Health Care / organization & administration
  • Radio Frequency Identification Device / organization & administration*