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Barcodes for more than just inventory management & shipping

When someone mentions barcodes or barcode scanning most people think of scanning shipping packages or checking out at the grocery store. They wouldn’t be wrong as those are probably the most common uses for barcodes. We see them in our everyday life. What most people don’t realize is that there are many other uses going on all around us.

The Medical Industry

If you have ever been in or visited someone in a hospital you were surrounded by barcodes. The medical industry uses barcodes in wide variety of applications. Patients are issued wristbands with a barcode on it that has a direct link to their patient history and information. The use of barcodes allows the medical staff to accurately identify and store critical patient information. Physicians and medical staff scan those wristbands when administering medication to a patient. Once the wristband is scanned, so is the barcode attached to the medication. This prevents patients from receiving the wrong medication or dosage. It can alert staff of allergies and existing conditions. This reduces the possibility of human error and grave consequences. The same barcode attached to the patient records can also enable quick and accurate billing information. Medical facilities also use barcodes to track, monitor and maintain medical equipment and records.

Document Management Systems

Document management systems use barcodes to scan and store documents in a systematic way. By assigning barcodes to specific files, a user is able to quickly and easily locate a requested document and retrieve the information. A barcode can be used to assign different categories and tags to specific documents, allowing segmentation and groupings by numerous categories. For example, an architectural firm may assign categories such as client, type of structure and location. If the barcode on a specific file contains information on all three categories, a user can request all files for a specific type of structure and the management system will pull all documents that meet that criteria regardless of client or location. A document management system, utilizing barcodes, is a quick and efficient way to manage, maintain and retrieve a wide variety of information.

Health Related Mobile Applications

We started this blog by mentioning that a common use for barcodes is checking out at the grocery store and that is correct, but another use of barcodes on food items has a huge health benefit. App developers are now creating mobile applications to scan the UPC codes on food labels. The apps provide diabetics with up-to-date information on the nutritional value of the scanned item. This provides an individual with the information needed to manage and control their diabetes. The weight loss industry has been using barcode scanning technology to assist dieters in choosing healthy, low calorie foods. Similar to the applications for diabetics, a user scans the UPC code and is instantly informed of calories, fat content and carbohydrates. This instant access to information is a huge value add for the industry.

These are just a few of the applications where barcodes can assist in acquiring information in a fast and efficient manner. Other applications include events, travel, entertainment, advertising, the list can go on and on. When developing an application, ask yourself if adding barcode technology can take your work to the next level. Once you determine that you do need barcode, check out Accusoft’s Barcode Xpress and Barcode Xpress Mobile. WIth over 25 year of experience, Accusoft offers superior barcode reading, writing and detection of over 30 different kinds of barcodes. Our SDK is available in multiple environments such as Java, Node.js, and .NET. To learn go to: