Objective: To control the workflow for surgical patients, we in-cooperate radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology to develop a Patient Advancement Monitoring System (PAMS) in operation theater. Methods: The web-based PAMS is designed to monitor the whole workflow for the handling of surgical patients. The system integrates multiple data entry ports Across the multifunctional surgical teams. Data are entered into the system through RFID, bar code, palm digital assistance (PDA), ultra-mobile personal computer (UMPC), or traditional keyboard at designated checkpoints. Active radio-frequency identification (RFID) tag can initiate data demonstration on the computer screens upon a patient's arrival at any particular checkpoint along the advancement pathway. Results: The PAMS can manage the progress of operations, patient localization, identity verification, and pen-operative care. The workflow monitoring provides caregivers' instant information sharing to enhance management efficiency. Conclusion: RFID-initiate surgical workflow control is valuable to meet the safety, quality, efficiency requirements in operation theater. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.