By Tom Roth, senior director, printer product management, Honeywell Scanning & Mobility
When it comes to tracking physical assets, nothing matches the accuracy, simplicity and cost-effectiveness of bar coding. The same holds true for tracking customers — whether they are patients in a hospital setting, attendees at an event, or inmates in a prison. Advances in wristband media technology — such as tamper-resistant closures and features that make them difficult to transfer to another person — have broadened their applicability beyond the traditional hospital setting. Here are some advantages of on-demand wristband printing in some traditional and non-traditional uses cases.
Traditional wristband applications
Effective patient care relies on accuracy, but human error is exceptionally difficult to eliminate in high-touch medical environments. To address this, bar codes and automatic ID technologies are being used increasingly across a wide range of medical practices. Patient wristbands are a common application. Integration of positive patient ID with bar code wristbands eliminate human error, while wristband printers deliver mission-critical printing reliability and provide straightforward compliance with HIPAA regulations for security of patient information.
Patrons of entertainment and leisure events are accustomed to wristband usage as a quickly verifiable right to participate. Examples of these applications range from water parks and concerts to ski lift entry. However, preprinted serialized bands have some inherent limitations. Without on-demand printing, they function as simple “license plates,” requiring entry into a database in order to develop any meaningful intelligence. Information on patron usage and participation rates can help guide optimal resource allocation and future investments. On-demand printed wristbands can be tied to visitor or member IDs, enabling simple visitor tracking as well as targeted marketing for additional services.
Non-traditional wristband applications
For large correctional facilities, new inmate processing is a time-intensive process, with the potential for extended holding times while waiting for ultimate placement. Positive identification is an essential part of this process and can extend across shift changes, making this process additionally challenging. On-demand wristbanding provides a logical, simple method to ensure accurate identification of inmates, streamlined processes, and simplified workflows. It also offers improved speed and service.
With the additional accuracy, security and efficiency that come with on-demand wristband printing, you might want to discuss your clients’ current ticketing, admissions, or pen-and-paper processes and how upgrading to on-demand printing could benefit them.