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The world comes together to share stories about GS1 standards in healthcare.

The GS1 Healthcare Reference Book 2018-2019 showcases the annual tradition of healthcare stakeholders helping others by sharing their stories of implementing GS1 standards. From every part of the supply chain and from every continent, 20 healthcare “storytellers” outline how they organised efforts and made investments to integrate GS1 standards in their business and hospital processes.

Each story summarises lessons learned along with best practices to help readers benefit from the stakeholder’s experiences. “We expect that others will use this reference book as a resource to help drive their own GS1 standards implementations,” explains Ulrike Kreysa, Vice President of GS1 Healthcare. “It provides valuable insights about ‘what it takes’ to implement standards and the potential ROI from using them in healthcare.”


Several themes in the use of GS1 standards are clearly recognised throughout the reference book.

First, there is increasing global recognition of how falsified and substandard medicines impact the health and well-being of the world’s population. The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) share their story about testing how the track and trace of health products with barcodes could be operationalised in the public health supply chains of Ethiopia and Pakistan. Securing the supply chain through a track and trace system enabled by GS1 standards is one of the tools available to prevent falsified medicines from entering the market.

Another trend is how healthcare providers are leveraging GS1 standards more and more in clinical processes involved in patient care. Hospitals in Australia, Brazil, Hungary, Japan, the UK and US tell how GS1 identifiers encoded in barcodes have extended their reach into their operating theatres, labs, pharmacies and more.

Finally, solution providers in healthcare are continuing to differentiate their offers and capabilities by integrating GS1 standards in their solutions. LANSA, 1WorldSync and Zebra Technologies are featured solution providers based on their roles to “speed and smooth” the path of implementing standards.

These are just a few examples of what you will find in the new GS1 Healthcare Reference Book 2018-2019. Take time to read it and bookmark it for future reference!