System Will Stop Identity Nightmares in Hospitals; TECHNOLOGY

The Birmingham Post (England), June 1, 2007 | Go to article overview

System Will Stop Identity Nightmares in Hospitals; TECHNOLOGY


Byline: By John Duckers Business Editor

Mistaken identity is a nightmare scenario in hospitals but in today's overstretched wards, it is a reality for some.

Now, a leading medical technology company in Birmingham is working with industry specialists Medilink West Midlands to secure second round funding for a "breakthrough" system designed to prevent errors on operating tables across the UK.

Amidst mounting public concern for the safety of patients, Safe Surgery Systems has developed an electronic wristband using passive radio frequency identification (RFID) to improve identification processes, patient safety and staff efficiency.

It is claimed it will save money and reduce the risk of litigation.

Safe Surgery Systems managing director, David Morgan, said: "There is a real need to prevent clinical mistakes and prioritise patient safety."

He highlighted a four month study by the National Patient Safety Agency which reported 493 cases of misidentification from 45 trusts.

And he points out that clinical negligence claims against the NHS are running in excess of pounds 400 million a year.

The planned second round of funding will back national trials of the new system, following a successful experiment in Birmingham's Heartlands Hospital.

Mr Morgan, who is also on the board of MedilinkWM, added: "Medilink West Midlands was instrumental in attaining seed funding from Birmingham Research and Development and a group of private investors two years ago.

"This allowed us to successfully expand our business and obtain ISO 9001-2000 accreditation for the design, supply and maintenance of medical software. …

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