Managing inventory in any industry is a demanding task that often falls to the wayside when more pressing matters are at hand. However, it is crucial for hospitals to have a well-organized inventory system to ensure the availability of essential medical supplies and maintain optimal functioning of hospital operations. The healthcare industry constantly evolves with new technologies and tools that can make inventory tracking more efficient. Here are some updated ways to organize your hospital inventory to ensure seamless patient care.
Adopt Inventory Management Software
Gone are the days when you’d have to painstakingly carry out inventory management on paper or in your head. With the advent of inventory management software, hospitals can now digitally track and organize their inventory items. These medical inventory tracking solutions help manage stock levels, set reorder thresholds, and monitor expiration dates effortlessly, keeping inventory levels in check.
These solutions are easy to use, and any authorized individual can access stock numbers from any device—including mobile—for real-time updates. This eliminates costly manual labor and ensures that the hospital’s essential supplies are always available at the right place and time.
Standardize Your Product Catalog
Cataloging your products is vital to ensure that nothing is overlooked and you count every item accurately for inventory. Standardizing your catalog of goods makes it easy for staff to find and order the necessary supplies.
By ensuring that the names, unit measurements, and codes are consistent across all items, you reduce the risk of errors in ordering and receiving. Automating new product onboarding can also guarantee the same standards are universally applied.
Minimize Duplicates and Optimize Storage
Identifying and removing duplicate items helps you reduce clutter and keeps purchasing costs at sustainable levels. Reducing stock to necessary levels also enables you to create clean and functional storage spaces, which helps with properly rotating products and allows for easy assessments of stock levels.
The right combination of storage solutions, including mobile units, shelving, carts, and inventory software, can help you achieve an organized, streamlined inventory.
Track Product Turnover
Having a good understanding of your product turnover rates is crucial for optimizing stock levels and ordering. It will allow you to identify slow-turning products and prevent overstocking of supplies that are not frequently used, thus reducing the amount of waste generated.
On the other hand, frequent monitoring of higher turnover ratios can help you identify stocking challenges and ensure timely ordering so that inventory levels are properly maintained.
Train Your Staff
Implementing the best inventory system won’t matter if the people handling it don’t understand how to use it correctly. Therefore, staff training should cover product handling, inventory management software use, proper storage and labeling, expired product identification, and efficient disposal procedures. Making these trainings routine will create a culture of accountability and responsibility, culminating in better inventory management practices.
The ever-changing nature of the healthcare industry requires constant assessment with measures to improve operational efficiencies, and inventory in hospitals is a crucial part of this. Facilities that overhaul their inventory management systems with updated ways to organize their hospital inventory will gain immediate benefits like cost reduction and provide better patient care in the long term.