VA’s Real-Time Location System: A way to improve patient safety, or Big Brother?

December 6, 2011
FedCyber Wire, Responses, Technology
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The Veterans Affairs Department views a planned $550 million Real-Time Location System as a way to ensure its hospitals properly sterilize medical instruments, improve efficiency and track equipment. VA unions view it as a Big Brother system that could monitor employees.

The department is scheduled to release on Tuesday a draft request for proposals for RTLS, which will use signals from Wi-Fi networks already installed in its hospitals to track equipment — and potentially employees — within a meter or better.

VA has referred to plans to track employee Wi-Fi tags with the system in a notice in September and a briefing in November, although the department said Monday it did not have an official plan in place to tag and track employees.

Tracking equipment will help solve one of its most vexing problems — lack of sterilization of medical equipment, VA Chief Information Officer Roger Baker said in a media call last month.

via NextGov, continued here.