Philips, TAGSYS, TI Compare RFID for Item-Level Pharmaceutical Apps

8/2/2004 - Philips, TAGSYS and Texas Instruments announced the release of a joint white paper, "Item Level Visibility in the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain: A Comparison of HF and UHF RFID Technologies." As established providers of radio frequency identification (RFID) technologies, the companies combined their expertise to detail the technical capabilities, deployment characteristics, and applicability of passive high-frequency (HF) and ultra-high frequency (UHF) technology for pharmaceutical item-level pedigree tracking applications. The white paper also highlights some of the existing commercial pharmaceutical and healthcare pilots and implementations.

The pharmaceutical industry is looking to RFID as a primary way of improving the safety and efficiency of the international drug supply chain through counterfeit prevention, decreased shrinkage and diversion, improved inventory management, and faster product recalls. According to the Food and Drug Administration, RFID provides the most promising approach for reliably tracking, tracing and authenticating pharmaceutical products, and it is recommending widespread use of RFID at the item-level by 2007. Despite industry momentum for RFID, there are still many misconceptions and issues to be resolved, including the choice of frequency. While much of the focus has been on passive tags in the UHF bandwidth, the paper also provides an in-depth perspective on HF technology, discussing the technical and deployment characteristics that make it the most effective path with the lowest risk for item-level identification and pedigree tracking.

"RFID has the opportunity to transform the pharmaceutical supply chain," said Lisa Clowers, vice president, supply chain processes and technologies, Healthcare Distribution Management Association (HDMA). "We continue to support collaboration with all members of the healthcare distribution supply chain to explore the appropriate RFID frequencies to drive industry adoption."

To download a copy of "Item-Level Management in the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain: A Comparison of HF and UHF RFID Technologies," visit any of the authors' Web sites at or

About Royal Philips Electronics
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI) is one of the world's biggest electronics companies and Europe's largest, with sales of EUR 29 billion in 2003. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. Its 165,600 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, semiconductors, and medical systems. News from Philips is located at

TAGSYS ranks among the top five RFID technology companies in the world. With a global brand presence of over 40 million RFID tags, ten thousand reader systems and 500 installations, TAGSYS has today taken the leadership position as the premier global independent RFID systems supplier for item level tracking, tracing and secure authenticity solutions. Underscoring TAGSYS’ core competencies is enabling complete efficiency-driven, ROI-weighted solutions for identifying and tracing items in highly specialized vertical markets and embedded systems. For more information, visit us at

About Texas Instruments
Texas Instruments is an industry leader in radio frequency identification (RFID) technology and the world’s largest integrated manufacturer of RFID tags, smart labels and reader systems. With more than 400 million tags manufactured, Texas Instruments RFid Systems’ technology is used in a broad range of applications worldwide including access control, automotive, document tracking, livestock, product authentication, retail, sports timing, supply chain, ticketing and wireless payment. TI is an active member of many standards bodies, including EPCglobal, ISO, and IEC, working to drive the adoption of global standards for RFID. For more information, contact TI-RFid Systems at 1-888-937-6536 (North America) or +1 972-575-4364 (International), or visit the Web site at

Texas Instruments Incorporated provides innovative DSP and analog technologies to meet our customers’ real world signal processing requirements. In addition to Semiconductor, the company’s businesses include Sensors & Controls, and Educational & Productivity Solutions. TI is headquartered in Dallas, Texas and has manufacturing, design or sales operations in more than 25 countries. Texas Instruments is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TXN. More information is located on the World Wide Web at

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