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How Materials Handling Addresses Three Urgent Healthcare Challenges

Nurse retrieves supplies from wire rackSupply chain managers in healthcare are constantly looking to reduce overutilization of resources, relieve drug shortages and capture cost savings. Material handling equipment often found in industrial settings can be part of the solution.

Reduce Overutilization

Overutilization refers to the overuse of resources such as needlessly prescribing antibiotics or choosing drugs that cost more but do not improve outcomes. Material handling equipment can be used to physically move resources where they are needed efficiently. Whether it’s using racking systems to keep nursing stations’ stock visible and accessible, or heavy-duty casters for moving equipment and removing trash, smart equipment choices and effective logistics are needed to maximize efficiency.

Respond to Drug Shortages

Shortages of drugs can force healthcare providers to use more expensive alternatives or stock up on drugs, driving up costs. Again, smart and evolving supply chain management can help to more quickly move resources where they are needed. So, for example, by receiving shipments directly from manufacturers, and handling smaller and more frequent orders themselves, hospitals manage a larger part of their own supply chain. Breaking down orders for each floor or department requires proper inventory management and equipment.

Improve Cost Savings

Materials handling equipment supports the complex distribution centers of hospitals, from delivering medicine to operating rooms, to replenishing supplies at a nurse’s station, to many other purposes. To ensure that your organization can adequately respond to ever changing demands, invest in reliable materials handling tools for improved inventory management and cost-efficient supply chain solutions. 

Reducing overutilization and avoiding expensive solutions to drug shortages are just two ways smarter supply chain management can reduce costs to healthcare institutions. By recognizing that they are supply chain organizations and adopting better equipment, software and other solutions used in other businesses such as direct to consumer distribution centers, cost savings can continually improve.