Battery-Free Barcode Scanning for Patient Care Without Interruption
Barry J. Ewell
September 8, 2020
Modern healthcare facilities have widely adopted barcode scanning for its advantages in electronic medical records (EMR), meds administration, equipment monitoring, sample analysis, and workflow. Over the years, manufacturers of barcoding technology have made incremental improvements in printing, scan resolution, speed, and wireless capabilities.
One familiar recent enhancement is the cordless barcode scanner. While their range of signal and battery life are limited, the cordless models offer several advantages to healthcare settings: freedom of movement; portability and equipment being located close to the point of care; easy cleaning; and increased safety without the cord snagging an IV line or entangling a person.
The benefits for healthcare will continue to leap forward as the scanning technology providers endeavor to understand how barcode scanners are really used in patient settings – by the clinicians themselves. The future of scanner technology in healthcare needs to address real-world problems and must deliver solutions that free up providers to focus on patient care and comfort.
A technology breakthrough that delivers even greater benefits is the battery free, cordless barcode scanner. The battery-free option removes one more barrier between the technician and the patient, decreasing any wasted effort, lost time, and frustration. The battery free cordless scanner is ready to perform approximately 450 scans on a single 60-second charge, at 2 p.m. or 2 a.m.
Scanners with a rapid charge feature have the potential to significantly help reduce manual overrides due to dead batteries. In practice, more manual overrides lead to medical errors. Nurses with ready access to working scanners are less likely to type information by hand into the computer.
Imagine never having to manage batteries again. You can be confident that the scanner will be restored to full function after a quick recharge. Using cutting-edge, built-in supercapacitor power storage, a battery-free cordless scanner today can be fully charged in 60 seconds from a power supply. And it will scan up to 100 barcodes with just a 20-second charge.
“My scanner is not working”
The number one cause of a reported “dead” barcode scanner is a completely depleted battery that needs complete replacement in the middle of a shift or busy period. Hospital staff are then required to track down replacement batteries, conduct scanner startup, and occasionally even troubleshoot scanner connection issues.
With a normal battery-powered cordless scanner, you can encounter scenarios like this:
Nurse: Hey, IT, my scanner’s not working, and I need another one now.
IT Administrator: OK, I’ll come up and replace it with one that’s working.
The IT administrator comes up to the floor to replace the dead scanner. The administrator first puts it on the charger to see whether it will light up within 12+ minutes to confirm that the issue is in fact a dead battery. It will then fully charge in roughly 4 hours
With a battery-free cordless scanner, the solution is much simpler, and much more efficient:
Nurse: Hey, IT, my scanner’s not working.
IT: Let’s see if it’s out of power. Please put it on the charger for 20 seconds and let’s see what happens.
Nurse: The LED just blinked.
IT: Great – it’s good to go. Just remember to put it on the charger as soon as you’re done.
Battery-free cordless scanners offer the freedom of wireless technology without the maintenance hassles or long recharge time associated with traditional batteries. Capable of delivering roughly 450 scans on a single 30-second charge, battery free scanners are perfect for meds administration applications where you need to scan a few items accurately and quickly, without needing to completely swap out your scanner in the middle of a shift to recharge for hours. Without time-consuming scanner downtime for recharging, the requirement for spare scanners is also greatly reduced, making the job of the IT administrator far easier.
Introducing: Xenon™ Extrement Performance (XP) 1952h Battery Free
The Xenon XP 1952h battery-free scanner has been designed from the ground up to be the perfect barcode scanning solution for modern patient care and hospital use.
Recharged in 60 Seconds, Right at the Bedside. Powered by supercapacitors instead of a battery, a 60 second full charge can deliver at least 450 scans at up to 10 meters (33 feet) from the base, making it the ideal scanner for patient care applications at the bedside such as meds administration or specimen collection. The quick charge feature of the Xenon XP 1952h battery free minimizes problems associated with dead batteries like manual overrides and unnecessary IT support calls.
Say Goodbye to the Maintenance Hassles and Costs of Battery Power. Without the battery management required in other cordless scanners, a common maintenance hassle is removed, an ongoing expense is eliminated, and the scanner is lighter and more environmentally friendly. Engineered to withstand 2000 tumbles at half a meter (1.6 feet) and 50 drops at 1.8 meters (6 feet), the scanners bring class leading durability and reliability to any environment.
Easier To Clean. Honeywell healthcare devices are made with disinfectant-ready plastics, and cordless models carry less potential for exposure to bacteria and viruses.
Compatibility for Xenon Customers. Xenon XP series is backward-compatible with the Xenon 1900g and 1902g, including power supplies, cables, and configuration barcodes. With a simple firmware update, the Xenon XP is even compatible with older scanner bases, saving you replacement and upgrade costs.
Barry J. Ewell is a Senior Content Marketing Communications Specialist for Honeywell Safety and Productivity Solutions. He has been researching and writing on supply chain topics since 1991.