By John Shoemaker and Scott Cobb, Shipcom Wireless
In May 2008, the U.S. Air Force Surgeon General's Office awarded Shipcom Wireless a multiyear contract to evaluate the opportunities for improving hospital processes at military medical treatment facilities (MTFs) and to implement automatic identification and data collection (AIDC) technologies to address various applications in clinical environments. The Air Force is investing millions of dollars that patient care, safety, and other processes can be improved through the use of RFID, sensors, wireless, and related technologies. This initiative to improve healthcare in hospital environments has begun in earnest at the Keesler Medical Center, located on Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, MS.
The program is a multiphase effort to bring light to new ways of solving old problems. While the project is focused at Keesler Medical Center, this is an Air Force project with potential benefits throughout the Air Force as well as the Department of Defense (DoD). In an effort to include DOD stakeholders and interest other organizations, Shipcom briefed the TriCare Management Activity (TMA), the Defense Medical Logistics Standard Support (DMLSS) and the Defense Health Information Systems (DHIMS) program offices, the Armed Services Blood Program Office (ASBPO), the Veterans Administration (VA), and others. These visits provided visibility and support for the efforts at Keesler Medical Center.