Data Matrix Based Low Cost Autonomous Detection of Medicine Packages uri icon


  • Counterfeit medicine is still a crucial problem for healthcare systems, having a huge impact in worldwide health and economy. Medicine packages can be traced from the moment of their production until they are delivered to the costumers through the use of Data Matrix codes, unique identifiers that can validate their authenticity. Currently, many practitioners at hospital pharmacies have to manually scan such codes one by one, a very repetitive and burdensome task. In this paper, a system which can simultaneously scan multiple Data Matrix codes and autonomously introduce them into an authentication database is proposed for the Hospital Pharmacy of the Centro Hospitalar de Vila Nova de Gaia/Espinho, E.P.E. Relevant features are its low cost and its seamless integration in their infrastructure. The results of the experiments were encouraging, and with upgrades such as real-time feedback of the code’s validation and increased robustness of the hardware system, it is expected that the system can be used as a real support to the pharmacists.
  • This work is financed by National Funds through the Portuguese funding agency FCT - Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, within the project LA/P/0063/2020.

publication date

  • September 2022