Electronic Design

IBM Uses RFID Tags In Drug-Tracking Device

IBM announced today that it will offer the ePedigree drug tracking device, which uses RFID tags to keep tabs on pharmaceuticals. Pharmaceutical companies, distributors, pharmacies and hospitals will be able to track a drug's travels from bottling to delivery. IBM said this will help combat drug counterfeiting and better enable clients to comply with regulation standards. Christian Clauss, director of Sensor Information Management for IBM's software group, said ePedigree will help manufacturers keep up with industry standards like those that will take effect in California in 2009. "This system has the potential to improve the integrity of the entire drug supply chain by allowing users to quickly authenticate pharmaceutical products through direct data exchange with trading partners," Clauss said in a statement. EPedigree is part of IBM's WebSphere RFID Information Center (RFIDIC), a data center that allows clients to manage information relating to pharmaceutical authentication. AmerisourceBergen, a "big three" pharmaceutical distributor, currently uses the ePedigree system, and ITAIDE, a global e-customs project, uses the WebSphere RFID Information Center to manage serial numbers of global shipping containers. Other pharmaceutical companies already use RFID tags to track large-scale drugs, like Viagra and OxyContin.

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