RFID Technology Prevents Infant Abduction at NC Hospital, Company Reports

Use of RFID "Hugs" system went into alarm when the infant was removed from nursery; staff responded to thwart abduction


VeriChip Corporation, a subsidiary of Applied Digital (ADSX), a provider of security and identification technology, reports that its "Hugs" RFID infant protection system has prevented the abduction of a baby at Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina.

On July 15, the Hugs system went into alarm when the infant was removed from the hospital's seventh-floor nursery. Staff quickly responded to the "CODE PINK" alert, and security officials thwarted the abduction, recovered the infant unharmed and returned him to the safety of maternity ward staff.

The "Hugs" Infant Protection System, part of a recent acquisition by VeriChip, contains a tiny radio transmitter designed to prevent infants from being removed from a healthcare facility without authorization. Every infant wears a Hugs tag on the ankle or wrist and exit points throughout the hospital are electronically monitored to detect unauthorized removal of an infant.

In the last 22 years, there have been 233 infant abductions in the United States, half of which occurred from healthcare facilities. VeriChip's RFID infant protection systems are designed to combat not only infant abductions, but accidental infant mismatchings. According to the Journal of Healthcare Protection Management, mismatching incidents occur an estimated 20,000 times annually. VeriChip's infant protection systems are currently installed in approximately 900 U.S. hospitals.

Applied Digital develops security products for consumer, commercial, and government sectors worldwide.

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