The ASHP Roadmap to RFID

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) recently released a report focusing on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for health system medication management.

The report begins, “Imagine a pharmacy where the inventory count is always correct, it automatically increments as orders are received and decrements as orders are filled. What impacts would this have on the budget, inventory management, patient care and overall workload?”

The report leads readers to imagine the future of hospital pharmacy if RFID technology was fully adopted and provides a roadmap for the transformation.

The ASHP report includes

  • The current state of technology in medication use systems
  • Evaluating RFID Technology
  • Implementing RFID Technology
  • Using Analytics and Measuring Outcomes of RFID
  • Advanced Uses and Innovations

The ASHP concludes, “RFID provides an important opportunity for pharmacy to lead the transformation to an integrated health system to optimize safety, outcomes and value.”

Review the ASHP report in its entirety: Advancing Medication Safety Through Technology Innovation: Focus on RFID Technology

The ASHP Survey

The ASHP project surveyed 232 participants, of which

  • 98% were pharmacists
  • 40% had implemented RFID technology
  • 31% had not evaluated RFID as an option but were interested in exploring the technology
  • 16% had evaluated RFID but had not committed or made a vendor selection

Those surveyed reported the following benefits from implementing RFID:

  • 82% improved inventory tracking
  • 73% data to optimize kit or tray contents
  • 72% decrease in expired medications
  • 64% tracking for purposes of drug recalls
  • 46% tracking during drug shortages

An evaluation must start with determining the goals, priorities and key stakeholders. Other key elements hospitals should consider when evaluating RFID technology include:

  • Intended locations for RFID implementation (Pharmacy, ED, OR)
  • Tag specific considerations (adhesive quality, cost structure, active vs passive)
  • Vendor support during implementation planning, go-live and post-implementation
  • Analytics platform cost and capabilities

Evaluate IntelliGuard™ Intelligent Inventory Solutions for Your Facility’s RFID-enabled Medication Management Solution

With a 99.99% level of medication inventory accuracy and solutions that manage medication from pharmacy to the point of care, IntelliGuard is leading the revolution towards a more efficient and effective system to track, trace and manage critical healthcare inventory


  • 99.99% accuracy and accountability in the dispense and re-stock process
  • Financial savings and increase in charge capture
  • Increased compliance and patient safety
  • End-to-end traceability and better clinical accountability
  • A compliant solution to meet the 2023 drug supply chain security act with GS1 interoperability
  • Accurate reports and analytics