Symbol Technologies, Pyxis and Ameranth Announce Wireless Mobile Computing Solution to Improve Patient Safety

PYXISVERI5 Medication Verification and Documentation System Designed to Reduce Medication Errors, Save Lives, Lower Costs

Symbol Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: SBL), Pyxis Corp. (a subsidiary of Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE: CAH)), and Ameranth Technology Systems announced today at the HIMMS trade show an agreement to develop and implement the PYXISVERI5(TM) Medication Verification and Documentation System for healthcare facilities.

Ameranth Technology Systems and Pyxis Corporation will jointly develop and integrate the PYXISVERI5(TM) Medication Verification and Documentation System, incorporating Symbol's handheld computers and wireless local area network, Ameranth's 21st Century Communications(TM) middleware, and specialized medication administration applications developed by Ameranth.

The agreement was announced at the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society Conference and Exhibition in Dallas, which was highlighted by a joint demonstration of the PYXISVERI5(TM) Medication Verification and Documentation Program by the three companies.

The PYXISVERI5(TM) Medication Verification and Documentation System is an adjunct to Pyxis' medication distribution system and will improve patient safety by allowing healthcare professionals to use wireless handheld computers to access patient records in order to verify prescriptions and check for allergies or interactions prior to administering medications. The system uses a Symbol PPT 2740 mobile computer with integrated Symbol Spectrum24 wireless LAN communications and bar code reader. Pyxis anticipates that will be a significant market for the PYXISVERI5(TM) using Symbol's computers licensed with Ameranth's 21st Century Communications middleware.

"According to the Institute of Medicine, more than 90,000 Americans will die this year from medical errors," said Harry B. Lerner, vice president of healthcare, education & hospitality, Symbol Technologies. "The solution developed by Ameranth and Pyxis which runs on Symbol's lightweight, rugged, wirelessly connected, scanning information appliances will help to reduce that number. Nothing prevents this solution from being deployed in every hospital in the country starting tomorrow."

"We know that 38% of all medication errors occur at the point of administration. We anticipate that the PYXISVERI5(TM) Medication Verification and Documentation System is going to cut that number in half, bringing an enhanced level of patient care to our customers," said John Rodenrys, vice president of research & development at Pyxis. "The fact that this Ameranth application will run on a sleek handheld computer which the healthcare professional can carry easily makes it that much more simple to deploy."

"In this new world of mobile appliances, customers will face the challenge of extending the power of their legacy desktop applications to handheld devices," said William Roof, Ameranth's chief technology officer. "Ameranth's middleware enables customers to do that with no disruption of their core activities. We believe that the Pyxis application running on Symbol's winning handheld computer proves this concept beautifully."

The healthcare professional administering the medication uses Symbol's PPT 2740 pocketable mobile computer to scan their own ID barcode, the barcode on the medication packaging, and the barcode on the patient's ID bracelet--identifying the administrator, the medication, and the patient. Using a wireless connection, this information is simultaneously compared to the patient's record in the Medical Administration Record database and checked against the patient's allergies and medication orders. The nurse will receive warnings related to allergies and warnings to promote that the medication is going to the right patient, in the right dosage, at the right time and via the right route. If the medication is approved and administered, the patient's record is instantly and accurately updated.

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