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High-Precision Printer Eases Compliance in Medical Packaging

Toshiba’s latest thermal barcode printer combines high-resolution printing with high precision in label feeding to print small labels.

Toshiba’s new thermal barcode printer, the B-EX4T3HS, prints at 600 dpi at speeds up to 6 in/s.
Toshiba’s new thermal barcode printer, the B-EX4T3HS, prints at 600 dpi at speeds up to 6 in/s.

Facing regulations geared toward tracking products through distribution and use, medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers might struggle to fit all the necessary information onto the necessarily small label. At PACK EXPO Las VegasToshiba America Business Solutions debuted a thermal barcode printer that not only prints at resolutions high enough to handle small printing but eliminates media shift as well, enabling higher precision in label printing.

Toshiba’s B-EX4T3HS prints 600 dpi at speeds up to 6 in/s. High accuracy—on labels as small as 0.51 x 0.12 in—is achieved with the use of center alignment, which eliminates media shifts to ensure consistently accurate placement of barcode data on small labels. These capabilities will enable manufacturers to print specialized labels in-house, thereby lowering the cost and maintaining better control of compliance issues.

This will be particularly useful in light of rules from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) that requires medical device manufacturers to include a unique device identifier (UDI), in some cases directly on the device, noted Theresa Lee, product manager for Toshiba. “The high resolution is able to handle those small labels,” she said.

Lee also commented about a customer that was having problems with its previous printer: They had checked that the labels were correct in the beginning, then walked away, ultimately having to scrap all the labels that became misaligned as the run continued. “We have precision from the first to the last label because of our media holder,” she said.

The B-EX4T3HS printer has a list price of $4,780 and is now available for purchase from authorized Toshiba resellers. As with other Toshiba printers, the new printer has a one-year standard return to depot warranty.


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