Journal of Medical Systems

, Volume 36, Issue 6, pp 3473–3489 | Cite as

RFID-Enabled Traceability System for Consignment and High Value Products: A Case Study in the Healthcare Sector

  • Ygal BendavidEmail author
  • Harold Boeck
  • Richard Philippe


This paper presents a case study of a hospital operating room that evaluated a Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID)-enabled traceability system for the management of consignment and high value products requiring item level traceability. Results indicate that the traceability system in conjunction with the redesign of replenishment processes facilitates item level traceability, improves financial controls and case costing, upgrades service levels and reduces inventory shrinkage. Other benefits include time saved from non-value-added activities that can be transferred to patient care activities. The solution can be considered (i) as an alternative to RFID-enabled cabinets used in the replenishment of consignment and high value supplies in certain operating rooms, cardiac catheterization laboratories and interventional radiology departments, or (ii) as a complementary solution facilitating the tracking of medical devices removed from RFID-enabled cabinets. In short, the end-to-end traceability of medical products in the healthcare supply chain can be significantly enhanced.


Supply chain management Traceability Radio frequency identification (RFID) High value medical products Hospital 



Activity-based costing


Association for healthcare resource & materials management


Automatic identification and data capture


American national standards institute


Business process reengineering


Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal


Clinical management software


Electronic data interchange


Electromagnetic interference


Electronic product code


Enterprise resource planning


High frequency


Health industry business communications council


Hospital information system


Inter-organizational system


Information technology


Net present value


Operating room


Radio-frequency identification


Return on investment


Real time locating system


Prescription medication


Supply chain management


Serialized global trade identification number


Stock keeping unit


Tag identifier


Toyota production system



The authors are grateful to (i) the CHUM for providing access to the field of research and for their time in reviewing the paper, (ii) the team of Logi-D for their immense support in this research and for providing us access to all relevant data to build the business case (iii) the reviewers for their useful comments on the first version of the paper. This article is an updated and extended version of a shorter paper presented at The Fifth International Workshop on RFID Technology—Concepts, Applications, Challenges (IWRT 2011) in Niagara Falls, Canada [43].


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.École des sciences de la gestionUniversité du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)MontréalCanada
  2. 2.Université de SherbrookeSherbrookeCanada
  3. 3.Logi-D Inc.LavalCanada

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