Healthcare Labels – Does Label Paper Matter?
At first glance, the paper used for adhesive healthcare labels can look remarkably similar. One label may seem have a shinier finish, while another may appear completely matter, and yet another may seem remarkably smooth instead of fibrous like a sheet of notebook paper. But it’s these seemingly small differences in the paper of healthcare labels that often tell the story of how the labels will perform.
Healthcare Labels are More Than Just Paper
Because they have diverse applications, the construction of healthcare labels is exceptionally important. A type of paper that’s perfect for one application could be totally ill-suited for another.
This is why label users should ideally contact us before they place an order, especially if they’ve never used labels before or are implementing a new type of label for a specific application. Below are three examples of how the paper your labels contain can affect the final application.
- Moisture Resistance
Conventional paper grades often contain fibers (e.g. cellulose) that readily absorb moisture. This makes them unsuitable to use in places that have a high moisture density, such as a workroom where metal parts are placed in parts washing systems that release vapor during the cleaning cycle, or when the system is opened for another batch to be processed. Label stock that absorbs moisture could cause the label to ripple and potentially make ink smear, if it is present.
- Written Information
The conventional paper that was your enemy in a moisture-rich environment can be your friend when it comes to recording handwritten information. The fibers in the paper absorb ink, making it easy to write quickly and legibly. Conversely, the slick facestock of a synthetic paper label that withstands moisture could make it difficult to write legibly and prevent the ink from absorbing. Depending on the application of the labels, this could present a serious safety concern.
- Label Printing System
If you order blank labels and print them on-site — even if you’re just adding a field of information to an otherwise finished label — it’s essential to choose healthcare labels whose paper works with your printers. For example, using labels whose paper doesn’t respond to heat would be a disaster if you ran them through a thermal printer. Similarly, synthetic labels with a non-absorbent facestock could create quite a mess if you passed them through an inkjet printer.
At the very least, using the wrong kind of paper labels can kill productivity, create preventable expense from wasted labels, and add more stress to an already fast-paced healthcare setting.
Need Healthcare Labels?
If so, don’t overlook how important label paper can be; it can literally make or break your labeling operation. To ensure you get the right product, we recommend you contact us today at (800) 323-0249, or send us an email through our contact form. We’ve been in business since 1969, providing stock and custom solutions to various healthcare entities, from hospitals to retail pharmacies. We’d love to put our expertise to work for your organization!