So Many Barcodes, So Little Time
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So Many Barcodes, So Little Time


Barcodes Shouldn't Make Things Harder

For patients who need a blood transfusion, barcode labeling is truly life or death scanning. With so many barcodes to scan on a single blood bag, the process of trying to hide and scan the right ones, in the right order can be very stressful. IV bags pose a different problem, sporting a single white barcode printed on the bag which is then encased inside of another clear bag adding layers of reflected complication. Is there a solution for scanning complicated barcodes and parsing only correct information needed? Yes there is – it’s called Code. 

The healthcare industry has focused on addressing this issue by adopting new processes and technology to combat human error in the labeling of transparent bags.


Barcodes, Barcodes, Barcodes

Historically, a blood transfusion required two nurses to be available for the whole process because of the careful checking required to match the blood to the patient. Barcodes and reliable readers significantly cut down on human error but issues still loom. Reading all those barcodes is a time-consuming and complicated process. It isn't a typical point, scan, beep, next process. Blood bags have so many barcodes that some scanners can become confused and either fail to read or misread the codes, and nurses are not sure which of the barcodes was read. IV bags might only have a single barcode, but it is printed white and most scanners can't read this style of barcode.

Overall, barcodes have delivered process improvements for every healthcare workflow and offered valuable checks and balances ensuring patient safety. Nurses simply need their barcode scanners to work as hard as they do. That means they need the ability to read these very difficult barcodes with zero-miss efficiency.  

Barcode scanning technology requires contrast for accurate reads. If the barcode in question doesn’t show enough contrast between light and dark elements, scanners fail to register any information. Saline bags are the perfect example of this with their white barcodes printed on the transparent material of the bag. These are hard for most basic barcode readers to decode, plus the added illumination makes the code all but disappear. This requires nurses to devise creative solutions to add a solid color behind the bag while simultaneously trying to scan the barcode. Fixes like these waste time and resources.

Blood bags have 4, 5, 6, or more barcodes printed on the front label; each barcode used for a different purpose and serving a specific function. A basic barcode reader just gets confused and will read the barcode that is the easiest to scan. Often it has trouble focusing on a specific barcode. Nurses find themselves trying to work around the problem - covering up barcodes they didn't want to scan in order to encourage the scanning of the ones they need. Again, not so helpful or efficient.

Code to the Rescue

That’s where Code readers come in. With Code, healthcare professionals achieve accurate results the first time every time. Code ensures that scanners can read omni-directionally and against all types of backgrounds, making colored barcode or contrast issues no longer a problem. Code barcode scanners will read the white barcode on saline bags on the first try (mic drop).  Code healthcare scanners are customizable to read all the barcodes you need on a blood bag in a single scan. Code readers will automatically block the codes you don't want scanned. Genius? We think so. It is time to get the job done faster and more efficiently with Code. 

Code ensures the most simple and reliable blood and saline bag scanning experience possible. Call us today - 801-495-2200

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