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Get a barcode for healthcare

Making healthcare safe and efficient with GS1 barcodes

GS1 barcodes are helping the NHS save thousands of lives and millions of pounds

Did you know?

Retailers have been using our Global Trade Item Numbers or GTINs to identify their products for 40 years - they’re the numbers you see under a barcode.

GS1 barcodes have been used for over 40 years in retail – saving the industry billions of pounds every year. Now healthcare is also adopting GS1 barcodes globally – to improve patient safety, enhance clinical effectiveness and drive operational efficiencies. In fact, it’s now mandatory to comply with GS1 standards across all NHS contracts. And we can help you with this.

We enable you to identify, capture and share information using consistent data – whether it relates to pharmaceutical products, medical supplies or patient records. Speaking the same language throughout the healthcare industry, from manufacture and distribution through to hospital wards, cuts errors, reduces costs and boosts efficiency. The result? Better, safer care for the patient.

So if you sell to the NHS or to the wider healthcare sector then you need to use GS1 barcodes.

What you need to do

To start assigning GS1 numbers and barcodes to your products, you’ll need a GS1 Company Prefix.

Follow the three easy steps to get started

Step 1 Join GS1 UK online

Step 2Receive your own unique GS1 Company Prefix

Step 3Start assigning GS1 numbers and barcodes to your products

Join now to start assigning your GS1 numbers and barcodes 

Once you’ve got your GS1 Company Prefix, you’ll be able to login to our member portal, which has tools and services to help you to manage all your GS1 barcode numbers and grow your business.

  • My Numberbank – helping you to store and manage all the GS1 numbers you assign to your products - these are called Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs)
  • Barcode image generator – create barcode images quickly and easily – and we’ll give you three free credits to get you started
  • Support and guidance – we’re here to help you so if you need any help with implementing our standards, or how they can help your business grow – get in touch

Why get your numbers and barcodes from GS1 UK?

Here's just some of the benefits of getting your barcode numbers from us.

BenefitsAuthentic source
You’ll receive an official GS1 certificate, giving you the peace of mind that your numbers are uniquely yours

BenefitsGet up and running in minutes
Sign up online and you’ll be able to start assigning your GTINs in minutes

BenefitsTraining and education
Get access to our Academy - webinars, online training resources and classroom sessions to suit your needs

BenefitsOver 40 years’ experience
We’ve been helping companies identify their products since the very first barcode was used back in 1973

BenefitsFree support by phone or online
Our support team is here to help you on your journey as your business grows

BenefitsManage your numbers online
Use My Numberbank to help you create, store and manage all of your GS1 numbers (GTINs) – for all of your products

BenefitsAllow you to trade globally
We’re part of the global GS1 organisation that ensure our barcodes work everywhere, in every supply chain in every country

BenefitsWorking for your benefit
As a not-for-profit organisation, we work with our members to continually develop our standards – so they keep pace with the changing business landscape

How much does it cost?

Membership fees
Turnover  Annual licence fee  Allocation
up to £0.50m £119 Up to 1,000 numbers
£0.5m to £1m £131 Up to 1,000 numbers
£1m to £10m £203 Up to 1,000 numbers
£10m to £50m £318 Up to 10,000 numbers
£50m to £100m £1,300 Up to 10,000 numbers
£100m to £250m £1,700 Up to 10,000 numbers
£250m to £500m £2,200 Up to 100,000 numbers
£500m to £1bn £2,700 Up to 100,000 numbers
Over £1bn £3,200 Up to 100,000 numbers

All prices exclude VAT

Join now to start assigning your GS1 numbers and barcodes

Frequently asked questions

What is a GLN and how can I get one?

A GLN, or Global Location Number, is used to identify your business as a legal entity, often via the use of EDI (Electronic Data Interchange). It can also be used to identify different offices, warehouses or even specific shelves within a warehouse. If you’re selling to major retailers they’ll often ask for your GLN. You can create your own GLNs once you’re a member of GS1 UK – from the unique company prefix we licence to you.

What is a GTIN?

A Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) is a number that uniquely identifies a product. You see them beneath the barcodes on almost every product in the world. Which is why they’re often called ‘barcode numbers’. In the UK and Europe they’re usually 13 digits long, in the US 12. You might see shorter 8 digit numbers, used on smaller products. There are even 14 digit versions, to identify cases of products. The same numbers are used to identify products sold online too. The important thing to know is that they are all licensed from GS1 organisations around the world – to guarantee their uniqueness. When you join GS1 UK you can create all the GTINs you need.

More FAQs

I need GS1 barcode numbers (GTINs) for...

Learn more about the GS1 Company Prefix

Already a member?

If you are already a member of GS1 UK then please login to our members area where you can create GTINs and barcodes for your products

Between the lines

NHS South of England Procurement Services

How GS1 standards help the NHS save time, money and lives