Category Archive: Label Printing

A Guide to Pharmacy Labels

Pharmacy labels clearly indicate important information about the prescription medication to enhance safe drug administration. They detail vital information such as the prescribing physician, the patient’s name, dosage instructions, the name and strength of the drug, and much more. Pharmacy labels also contain information about side effects, restrictions, and proper administration.

Pharmacy labels are essential to ensure proper patient care in hospitals, nursing homes, physician’s offices, and other healthcare facilities. Mislabeled or unlabeled medications can cause liability issues for healthcare providers. Suppliers like Technicode Inc can provide you with the direct thermal label printing capabilities to ensure your pharmacy labels are of the highest quality.

Materials in Pharmacy Labels

pharmacy labels

Packaging or containers that come into contact with the product must meet strict health safety standards. But since pharmacy auxiliary labels don’t come into contact with the drug, they are not as closely regulated.

Pharmacists and drug manufacturers can use a wide variety of materials to label the exterior of the medicine package, including holographic films, standard white paper stock, shrink sleeve labels, and more.

Multi-layer labels are common in healthcare and pharmaceutical products because they are required to display large amounts of information. To enhance product safety, you should consider choosing coatings, adhesives, and inks with low migration characteristics, meaning the material will not transfer the substances to the drug.

Types of Pharmacy Labels

There are several types of pharmacy labels, each of which provides different types of information about the drug and its use. Label types include the following.

  • Storage Expiration Labels
  • USP 800 Labels
  • PIS Labels
  • Medication Instruction Labels
  • Communication Labels
  • Medication Flag Labels

Storage Expiration Labels

This label shows the period when the medication’s active ingredient or excipient can be expected to maintain its potency. It details the date opened and storage requirements, among other information.

USP 800 Labels

These labels are designed for the clinical staff so that they can handle HDs accurately and safely. The label contains information on storage, shipping, and disposal and instructs proper PPE usage.

PIS Labels

PIS labels provide clear images for accurate barcode or QR scanning to ensure that the product is authenticated. They also connect with the pharmacy information system (PIS), which records, manages, and stores your medical data. This data is then used for patient decision support, re-ordering, reporting, and billing.

Medication Instruction Labels

This type of label guides patients and clinical staff on the proper dispensing methods for the medication. They are effective in reducing medicine mix-ups and ensure there are no errors when administering the drug by clearly stating when and how to take the medicine.

Communication Labels

These labels primarily list the details of the medication’s dosage and the necessary safety procedures.

Medication Flag Labels

These labels wrap around hard-to-label packaging and vials to provide easily located instructions and alerts. For example, if a manufacturer makes a significant change to a non-prescription drug, they need to include a medication flag label on the product for six months.

Important Design Considerations

Due to the scientific nature of medications, many people have a difficult time reading and understanding medication labels, which can lead to medication errors. When designing your pharmacy label, it is vital to note that the design must be able to be understood by all people, especially for patients with chronic conditions and senior adults. Depending on whether you are designing over-the-counter drug labels or prescription drug labels, here are some important design considerations that you should keep in mind.

  • Prescription Label Size: Patients must be able to read the prescription label text.
  • Layout Information: A good design layout helps improve comprehension when reading the label.
  • Color and Graphics: Visuals help to emphasize the text and draw attention to important information.
  • Clear Verbiage: Ensure that phrasing is clear to avoid misleading details.

Order Pharmacy Labels at Technicode INc.

Unlike pharmacy packaging, which is heavily regulated, you have more freedom with your prescription labels. However, it is important to obtain high-quality labels to ensure that patients and clinical staff alike easily understand the information to avoid accidental drug misuse.

Technicode Inc. is a leading supplier of top-quality thermal printing supplies all over the United States. We offer a wide variety of custom blank, direct thermal labels, or printed thermal transfer, with printing up to six colors. Depending on your needs, pharmacy labels can be converted into rolls, sheets, fan-folded, or piggybanks. Labels are made to work with most major brand printers such as Zebra-r, Datamax-r, Intermec-r, Sato-r, Avery-r and many more printers.

Contact us to learn more, or request a quote today.

What Is a PCB Label?

Electronic component labels on circuit board

Printed circuit board labels (PCB labels) help electronic equipment manufacturers keep track of PCBs during production, storage, and installation, ensuring they use the right components in their products. PCB labels are electronics labels that convey critical PCB information in an easily accessible format, including the PCB’s origin and lot numbers, test data, soldering temperature, and flux density.

Printed circuit boards (PCBs) are critical elements of electronic devices and systems, from computers and cell phones to medical devices and industrial equipment. By mechanically supporting and electrically connecting electronic components, they ensure electrical power and signals can flow where needed for the operation. However, they must be properly designed and installed to ensure they work as intended, which is why electronic equipment manufacturers often utilize printed circuit board labels.

The following article provides an overview of printed circuit board labels, highlighting why they are important, how to choose the right materials, and what solutions are available at Technicode, Inc.

Why PCB Labeling Is Important

PCBs labels are essential for traceability. They facilitate the tracking of PCBs throughout manufacturing, assembly, and distribution operations, ensuring the components proceed through the full production cycle, and the manufacturer integrates the right units into products. Overall, they can enhance a facility’s management capabilities and increase its production efficiency.

How to Choose the Right Materials for PCB Labels

Given their importance in electronic product manufacturing operations, PCB labels must be designed for long-term readability. The failure of a label means a PCB unit cannot be tracked through operations, which can result in manufacturing errors that waste time, money, and material. That’s why PCB labels are made from materials and with printing techniques capable of withstanding exposure to chemicals, extreme temperatures, wear, and other degrading conditions.
PCB labels can be made from a variety of materials, each of which offers varying levels of durability. The right material depends on when they are applied and what conditions to which they are exposed.

Applied at Start of Manufacturing Process

If the PCB label will be applied at the beginning of the manufacturing process, polyimide labels are an appropriate option. Polyimide labels use substrates and adhesives that are resistant to high temperatures, which allows them to withstand exposure to the elevated temperatures experienced during reflow and wave soldering operations.

Applied After Board Washing, Durability Expected

If the PCB label will be applied after board washing operations and durability is expected, polyester labels are an appropriate option. Polyester labels use substrates and solvent acrylic adhesives that can withstand exposure to IPA cleaning chemicals.

Applied After Board Washing, Durability Not Expected

If the PCB label will be applied after board washing operations and durability is not expected, paper labels are an appropriate option. Paper labels use adhesives that may dry out, so they can fall off over time.

PCB Label Solutions at Technicode

At Technicode, we are a premier source for high-quality barcode labeling supplies. We offer a broad selection of products to meet the needs of our customers. Our PCB label offerings include:

Duratran™ Gloss White Polyester Electronic Component Labels

This topcoated white glossy polyimide film is coated with an aggressive permanent acrylic adhesive.

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Duratran™ Gloss Polyimide Electronic Component Labels

These film labels employ a permanent adhesive that’s designed for use in extremely high temperature environments. They are commonly used to label printed circuit boards.

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Order PCB Labels From Technicode, Inc. Today

Want to learn more about PCB labels? Ask the barcode label experts at Technicode! We’ve supplied premium thermal transfer printing media, including for PCB labels, for over two decades, so we can answer or address any questions or concerns you may have about these products. We can also provide standard or custom label solutions, with or without printing, for your applications. For additional information about our PCB labels and other quality products, contact us or request a quote today.

What’s the Difference Between Thermal Transfer and Direct Thermal Printing?

Thermal Transfer Labels

Thermal printing uses one of two processes: thermal transfer or direct thermal printing. Both methods are similar in that they use a thermal printhead to apply heat to a surface. However, direct thermal printing requires chemically treated, heat-sensitive material, and thermal transfer printing uses a heated ribbon to transfer images onto a wide range of materials.

In both methods, a printhead containing small heating elements delivers heat to specific areas to produce an image. The resolution of the image is determined by the arrangement and number of heating elements, or dots per inch (DPI), in both methods. The higher the DPI, the better print resolution and quality produced. The main difference between the two methods is the printing surface, which we will detail further below.

Thermal Transfer Printing

To choose the best thermal printing technique for a given application, it’s necessary to have a basic understanding of the functionality of each method. Let’s take a closer look at how thermal transfer printing works and its unique advantages.

How Does a Thermal Transfer Printer Work?

Thermal transfer printing uses heating elements located in a printhead to deliver punctual heat to a passing ribbon. The ribbon melts onto a label forming the printed image. The label absorbs the ink to apply the image to the media. In this type of thermal printing, both the ribbon and label stock must be carefully chosen. The material and adhesive qualities of the label and ribbon must be well matched to achieve prints that are of the highest quality and durability. Choosing the correct materials allows the final product the ability to withstand chemical and UV exposure, extreme temperatures, robust cleaning procedures, and more.

Advantages of Thermal Transfer Printing

Thermal transfer printing achieves crisp, high-definition images, text, and graphics that boast maximum readability, scannability, and long-life image stability. Both single and batch printing can be performed while producing virtually no waste, and nearly any media can be printed. Thermal transfer printers are more durable than conventional printers affording your application more reliability and lower maintenance costs.

Applications of Thermal Transfer Printing

Thermal transfer printing is compatible with a virtually unlimited variety of media stock, making the applications for this printing method just as diverse and applicable to many industries. Some common applications include:

  • Circuit board tracking
  • Asset tagging
  • Inventory identification
  • Cold storage
  • Outdoor applications
  • Certification labels
  • Marking laboratory specimens

Direct Thermal Printing

In direct thermal printing, the image is applied directly to the material as opposed to a ribbon as in thermal transfer printing. The following sections will explain how direct thermal printing works, its key advantages, and its most suitable applications.

How Does Direct Thermal Printing Work?

In this technique, the heating elements in the printhead apply punctual heat directly to a label featuring a heat-sensitive coating. The chemicals in this coating cause a reaction that changes the label color from white to black in the areas where heat is applied. Direct thermal printers are simpler in design than thermal transfer printers because they do not require a ribbon.

Advantages of Direct Thermal Printing

This method produces images that scan well and can be used with recyclable materials. This method is ideal for applications in which the image does not need to last long, such as receipts or shipping labels. Direct thermal printers are easy to operate since they do not use ink or toner. They produce virtually no waste and have low, long-term maintenance costs as they are very durable and don’t have supplies that need to be replenished.

Applications of Direct Thermal Printing

Thermal Transfer vs. Direct Thermal Printing

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The labels used in direct thermal printing are extremely sensitive to heat, light, and other environmental conditions. As such, common applications include items typically used or stored indoors, such as:

  • Receipts
  • Tickets
  • Visitor identification for hospitals or schools
  • Shipping labels
  • Pharmacy Labels
  • Food Labeling Labels
  • Restaurant Order Labels
  • Barcodes

In Need of a Thermal Transfer or Direct Thermal Labels?

Technicode, Inc. has been a reliable source for thermal printing supplies for over 20 years. Our products are compatible with all the leading thermal printer brands and we also develop custom-sized labels, with or without printing. Thermal printing media by Technicode is proudly made in the USA and always ships quickly. If you have questions about which printing method is right for your application, please contact us. If you know which labels you need for your application, request a quote today to get started.