Introducing the UnitVisID Alliance
The Alliance is made up of representatives from industry leading players across the entire pharmaceutical supply chain. Check out the current membership.
What is the UnitVisID Alliance?
The UnitVisID Alliance is a self-governing Alliance established to unify the industry around an approach to serialized, RFID-tagged pharmaceutical products. Our goal is to ensure the quality, performance, and interoperability of RFID tagged drug products as they move through the supply chain from the manufacturer, through the distributor, to the hospital and eventually into the patient, across any and all hardware or software systems.
The UnitVisID approach takes serialization beyond DSCSA, from the unit of sale to the unit of use. The UnitVisID approach uniquely serializes every unit-of-use medication, container, or device and tracks every action taken upon it during its entire lifecycle.
UnitVisID-tagged drugs and hardware devices are compliant with existing standards like RAIN and GS1, and have been tested to ensure:
- Performance — The best RFID inlay has been chosen for the size, shape, and material of the container, and the environment(s) in which they’ll be scanned
- Interoperability — The drug will read in real-world test scenarios in all certified hardware devices
- Complete and Accurate Data — A full and evolving record of each drug’s attributes and event history is stored in the cloud and available to all parties
UnitVisID Alliance was originally launched as the DoseID Consortium. We changed our name to better reflect our work around medication visibility and the benefits of that to hospitals and the supply chain.
Why was the UnitVisID Alliance created?
Despite huge investments by health systems into automation solutions, many challenges remain - shortages, recalls, workflow inefficiencies and lack of interoperability. In recent years a variety of different RFID solutions have come into the healthcare market to track drug products, instruments, and supplies without any industry-wide standards having been established to ensure quality, performance, and interoperability between them. With industry-wide support of a comprehensive set of RFID standards for healthcare, players along the pharmaceutical supply chain can work together to solve these issues proactively rather than reactively.
We recognized the need to bring together the industry in a way that ensures RFID tagged drugs work in all of the downstream systems in hospitals and health systems. This centralized “backbone” of data exchange, combined with a unified set of performance standards, opens a world of interoperability that provides a complete and accurate history of drugs that every industry participant can use.
Kit Check, holder of 90% of the unit-dose RFID market in US hospitals, built a serialization service and centralized cloud repository of drug data originally for the use of its own customers, so that they could store and exchange data about RFID-tagged medications in a fast and secure manner. The platform grew and grew, registering over 120 million unit doses by 2020, with most of those doses being registered at the point of production by manufacturers of pharmaceutical products. However, the market for medication automation is a lot larger than one vendor, and there are too many use cases for RFID for a single vendor to offer solutions for.
So a decision was made: open up the platform to other automation vendors, and create an independent body to develop and administer comprehensive RFID standards to the industry. This standards body, administered by representatives of hospitals, automation vendors, software vendors, and drug manufacturers, will ensure an interoperable, high-performance future for RFID in the pharmaceutical industry.