Real-time Location Systems (RTLS) in Healthcare: Wi-Not Wi-Fi?

Posted by: Kenny Schiff on August 7, 2009

Just finished reading David Hoglund’s newest white paper on RTLS in healthcare. If you are in healthcare technology, and are not already tracking David’s excellent Healthcare Wireless and Device Connectivity blog I highly suggest either firing up your RSS reader and pointing it here, or signing up for his newsletter here. You can download the white paper here here.

I’m not always a great fan of white papers as I often find them manipulative point of view wise, but I think this piece (except for a couple of paragraphs at the end) gives a very impartial read on the whys and hows of RTLS/RFID in healthcare. While it details eloquently the short-comings of WiFi and zonal “good enough” approaches, it more importantly couches them properly against the larger more practical business cases for RTLS in healthcare. David’s piece is less a condemnation of WiFi, and more of a call to making this about business not technology.

Hoglund developed this whitepaper for AwarePoint (whose RTLS technology uses ZigBee), but the conclusions could have just as easily pointed to Sonitor (Ultrasound), or Centrak (IR/RF).

The good news is that customers have some solid choices in powering the critical applications that are so desperately needed to help improve healthcare business performance.

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  • Tony Clayton: Agree with others that open standards, i.e. SIP is the way to go. As an example our ICW-1000G Dual Band...
  • David Hoglund: Wow, did I strike a cord or not! All validates the issues at hand. Yes, for the facts I did receive...
  • CT: Hey, Clay, settle down there buddy. Certainly a hostile, inflammatory response absent of facts isn’t going...
  • Bill: Greg: Thanks for your comments. I agree that passive is not an RTLS solution but is lumped in with the broadly...
  • Greg B: This article title does not make much sense to me. First of all I do not consider passive to be RTLS ie real...


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