IRSST - Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail

Assessing the Impact of an RFID Scrubs Management System on Operational Performance and Workers’ Health and Safety in the Era of COVID-19

Abstract

The goal of this research project is to improve the distribution system of medical uniforms (scrubs) in Montréal hospitals.

Uniforms help to protect medical staff but they may also be a vector of contamination and their sound management is crucial. However, in many healthcare facilities, scrubs management is inefficient, resulting in preprogrammed restocking that does not take into account the actual needs at points of access, such as shortages of specific sizes or models. Poor shelving organization leads to excessive handling of uniforms to find the desired model. Other problems observed include the hoarding of scrubs in lockers to counteract a perceived risk of shortages, and noncompliance with infection control regulations.

Scrubs distribution systems in the form of smart cabinets supported by RFID (radio frequency identification) technologies have been implemented in some hospitals. Scrubs are equipped with RFID tags to enable automatic detection in the cabinet in real time. While this appears promising, it also raises many questions. Scientific studies in the field are primarily concerned with logistical processes and not with the choice of design of the most appropriate solutions that will support the logistical process from laundry to distribution, in addition to the means of reducing contamination and safeguarding the health and safety of staff.

Additional Information

Type: Project
Number: 2020-0053
Status: Ongoing
Team:
  • Ygal Bendavid (Université du Québec à Montréal )
  • Yasmina Maïzi (Université du Québec à Montréal )