HUG Events

The life of a product from manufacturer to patient!

HSE Dr Steevens, 4th May 2018

The HSE hosted the GS1 Ireland Healthcare User Group (HUG) Supplier Briefing on Friday 4th May 2018 in the Boardroom of HSE, Dr Steevens. The event was very well attended with nearly 100 delegates representing medical device suppliers and manufacturers as well as healthcare providers. The event focussed on the life of a medical device product as it travels from manufacturer to the patient.  

Speakers: HUG Supplier Briefing Day May 2018

HSE GS1 HUG Briefing Speakers May 2018

From L to R: Mike Byrne GS1, Declan O’Reilly GS Medical, Shay Farrelly Haemophilia Patient, John Swords HSE, Ronnie McDermott HSE, Maria Svejdar GS1, Siobhain Duggan GS1, Pat Tracey DCC Vital.

Shay Farrelly, a Haemophilia patient, spoke about the challenge faced by haemophilia patients to regain trust in the supply of medication after the hepatitis and HIV contamination scandal. Today, patients have a world-class track and trace solution that identifies, manages and records their medication. A key feature of the solution is a phone app that enables them to scan and record their medication at the point of care. Not only does this check and validate the treatment, but additionally informs their clinical care record, which leads to benefits for patient safety, efficiency and better quality care.

Presentation (PDF): Shay Farrelly, The Patient's Perspective

The theme of traceability was referenced throughout the morning. The second speaker John Swords, Head of Procurement HBS, HSE, confirmed the importance of unique identification to enable the implementation of the Electronic Health Record as well as the IFMS (Integrated Financial Management System) which is currently a major part of the HSE work programme. 

“Track and trace is where we want to be going as part of the IFMS and EHR rollout.  This is key for patient safety,” says John Swords, who confirmed that the GS1 Unique Identifier is part of many current HSE programmes, including the Individual Health Identifier (IHI).

Presentation (PDF): John Swords, Digitisation of Healthcare

Presentation (PDF): John Swords, HBS HSE Procurement

Manufacturers selling medical devices in Europe will be required to register their device information in the EUDAMED database by 2020; and from 2021 devices will be required to have a UDI barcode on the product packaging.  The labelling of devices will be a phased approach similar to the US FDA regulation, starting with Class III devices.  The regulation will require manufacturers to include the UDI in the Field Safety Notices and recall notices being provided to the regulatory bodies in each country. 

Ronnie McDermott, HSE Medical Equipment Management Lead confirmed the importance of the UDI for managing both medical equipment and medical devices during his presentation. “RFID tags with 2D Datamatrix Barcodes are being rolled out as the standard asset identifier for all medical equipment across the HSE, for improved and enhanced patient safety,” said McDermott.

Presentation (PDF): Ronnie McDermott, Asset Identification and Tracking

The role of the manufacturer and distributor is vital in delivering UDI compliant products to the market. Declan O’Reilly from GS Medical and Maria Svejdar from GS1 Ireland presented an overview of how to get started with UDI barcoding. “Traceability is key, not just for our internal processes but most importantly for track and trace of products to the patient,” said Declan O’Reilly, GS Medical.

Presentation (PDF): Declan O'Reilly GS Medical & Maria Svejdar, GS1 Ireland, Getting Started with UDI & GTIN Barcoding

The EU UDI regulation also includes a requirement for healthcare providers to capture and store the UDI in their systems, preferably electronically, starting with Class III devices. 

“The best unique identifier is the barcode and we see this as the single most reliable piece of information,” said John Swords, who spoke about the work being done in the National Distribution Centre (NDC) to standardise information using the UDI/GTIN (Global Trade Item Number) as the unique identifier in the HSE systems.  This will support compliance to contracts and traceability of product to the patient. Collaboration with suppliers is a key part of this work and the audience were invited to work with the HSE to support the standardisation of coding and data. The time to act is now.

Presentation (PDF): John Swords, GTIN and Product Data for the NDC

For more information, please contact: Mike Byrne, CEO or Siobhain Duggan, Director of Healthcare and Innovation, GS1 Ireland

Tel: 01 208 0660 Email: 


Safer More Efficient Care Starts with a Simple Scan

Getting ready for the EU Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Regulations – Implications for Hospitals and Suppliers

Event held Tuesday 28th March 2017 in Cherry Orchard Hospital, Dublin. We would like to extend a big thank you to all our speakers and supporters including the HSE, HPRA, IMVO, GS1 Global, Hospitals and Suppliers.

Morning Session: Falsified Medicines Directive

The morning session focussed on the Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD). The EU date for compliance is 19th Feb 2019.

Session Chair: Orlaith Brennan, IPHA

Speakers and Presentations

(Please click on the presentation you would like to download. The pdf will open in a new window.)

Afternoon Session: Medical Device Regulation - Unique Device Identification

The afternoon session focussed on the Medical Devices Regulation (MDR) and Unique Device Identification (UDI). The EU date for compliance is 2020.

Session Chair: John Swords, HSE

Speakers and Presentations

(Please click on the presentation you would like to download. The pdf will open in a new window.)

Safer more efficient care starts with a simple scan

HSE Procurement hosts Irish Healthcare User Group (HUG) seminar to examine the benefits of, and requirements for, barcode technology across the healthcare supply chain

The HSE Dr Steevens Hospital was the venue for the Irish Healthcare User Group (HUG) seminar on 4th November last. Over 80 senior leaders from Irish healthcare were present, with representatives from both the supplier and healthcare provider communities in attendance.

“Safer more efficient care starts with a simple scan” was the theme of the meeting. The presentations, delivered by guest speakers from across the clinical, regulatory and commercial worlds, looked at the wide ranging benefits to be accrued from the adoption of unique identification numbers and barcode scanning - right across healthcare, from procurement to theatre and bedside scanning.

Individual Health Identifier (IHI)

The event opened with a presentation from Richard Corbridge, CIO HSE. Mr Corbridge emphasised the requirement for a standards-based approach for Unique Identification saying “we can’t deliver without GS1 and data standards - we need to be able to identify all parts of the care journey”. He outlined plans for the launch of the Individual Health Identifier which will be based on the GS1 identifier for patients.


Unique Identification with a GS1 GTIN

John Swords of Health Business Services, the HSE’s Procurement Division, outlined how procurement is building on existing successful implementations of track and trace in Irish healthcare. Lighthouse Projects such as surgical instrument and endoscope tracking, as well as haemophilia medication management, use the GS1 GTIN as the single identifier, supporting a single system and one voice for health. 

‘GTIN is just another name for a barcode. The most fundamental thing is to start with the GTIN and get your master data right,’ said Pat Tracy Group Operations Director, DCC Vital who spoke at the seminar about the ‘opportunity or cost’ of implementing GS1 standards. Mr. Tracy continued that regulation is mandating this change for suppliers, so industry must embrace it.  He commented that while implementation will cost money there are opportunities for suppliers, big and small, in automating the order-to-cash cycle. 

Michael Kelly, former Secretary General for the Department of Health and Board Director of GS1 Ireland and Chair of the Healthcare Committee moderated the event.  Mr. Kelly outlined the opportunity for Ireland to leverage learnings from best practice both in Ireland and internationally.  He pointed to the benefits of uniquely identifying patient, provider, product, place and procedure enabling the capture of information and outcomes based analytics.  With work underway on the single financial management system the timing is right to ‘design in’ GS1 standards from the start, for a joined up system approach.

Presentations from the HUG - HSE - GS1 Breakfast Briefing held on 4 November 2016 in Dr. Steevens' Hospital are available below to download.

Please right click on the file of your choice to download to your computer.

Speakers & Presentation Files (pdf)

To learn more about the implementation of GS1 standards in healthcare visit our Get Started web pages or listen to a recording of our dedicated Get Started webinar:

Webinar: Get Started with GS1 in Healthcare

Explore the Get Started in healthcare web pages

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