With the emerging need to delicately balance the medical devices’ security and patient safety, medical device manufacturers are facing numerous challenges like reducing costs, better inventory management, improving efficiency, and allocating resources effectively. The need for inventory management solutions is increasing for medical devices manufacturers owing to the surge in demand for better healthcare products.
Poor inventory management or disconnected systems can lead to operational inefficiency and issues with order fulfillment, which rises concurrently with an increase in the demand. Additionally, it can also result in wastage of time, space, and can increase the cost of operations. Therefore, it is important for the manufacturers of medical devices to understand that creating a feasible model for inventory management is central to the sustainability of their business.
At SpendEdge, we understand the impact that an effective inventory management solution can have on your business. And to help companies manufacturing medical devices in the changing landscape of the medical industry, our team of experts has highlighted five ways to examine their inventory management process and improve their efficiency.
How to Evaluate Your Inventory Management Solution for Medical Devices?
#1: Evaluate the ease of use in your inventory management process
The best inventory management solution is one that minimizes the amount of time a clinician has to spend managing inventory and enable them to focus on patient care. The inventory management process for medical devices needs to be intuitive and easy. For example, suppose a clinician places a stent in a cabinet, and the cabinet automatically captures data from the stent (such as size, model, lot number, expiration date, serial number) and then updates the profile of the inventory with this information. Then suppose the stent is being removed from the cabinet and the cabinet automatically raises a flag in the system that a stent is missing. This way, the issue can be resolved easily. Easier is the solution, better are the chances of its acceptance.
#2: Check for real-time tracking
Medical devices manufacturers should ensure that their inventory levels can be tracked from real-time automated systems. This can fetch tracking information every few minutes without any human intervention. Even with complete visibility across all inventories, tracking is a pointless exercise if appropriate items are not charged to the patient after use. Real-time inventory management of the medical devices optimizes the supply chain and helps the manufacturers to keep track of product movement, resulting in overall efficiency in the business. Also, the company can analyze the data to schedule raw materials optimally, eliminating situations of stock-out as well as excessive inventory. While real-time tracking of inventory may not always be possible owing to practical limitations in logistics but it helps to enable organizations to optimize their inventory and attain mastery over velocity of inventory.
#3. Examine historical trends
Insufficient inventory can result in medical devices shortages, canceled procedures, and increased patient risk. Matching inventory par levels and analyzing historical trend data to usage patterns can reduce overall par levels without risking a shortage of product while allowing you to plan and predict for recurring trends. Particularly for high-value items, predictive analytics that looks at historical use to anticipate future use is necessary, especially for the long-term inventory strategy to be successful. It also supports cost-per-case analytics, par level matching for usage, and product standardization efforts across multiple systems of the hospital.
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#4: Your inventory management process must have future-proof solutions
Systems that can adapt to emerging technologies quickly will extend the life of the investment for years to come. Inventory management solutions for medical devices should predict changes whenever possible and should be built on a framework that is flexible and allows for innovation in tangentially related areas. Ensuring that inventory management solutions for medical devices are compatible with the advanced technology, and other future technologies, will likely lower risks to use and increase the long-term return on the investment.
#5: Check the compatibility
Inventory management solutions for medical devices need to be compatible with multiple levels of use across hospital departments, products, and health systems. From stents to cotton swabs, solutions must account for the diversity of supplies while keeping an account of whole inventory. With complete visibility of inventory across departments, total par levels can be significantly reduced, and products can be reallocated where it is needed before the expiry. The real potential of your inventory management process for medical devices can be realized when complete visibility is recognized throughout a large hospital system.
Wondering how to make your inventory management solution efficient to ensure medical devices security? Request a free demo below.