Even as countries are beginning to lift the lockdown slowly, hospitals are still battling the COVID-19 cases.
Business activity is a powerful engine of a revenue source to the government with all the taxes paid to the exchequer. The entire economy of the world has been shaken by the coronavirus. However, now is the time to bounce back to activity.
We have seen cases of hospitals getting overwhelmed during the health crisis. There were scores of patients in the line waiting for medical care, beds were getting scarcer, demand for ventilators far outstripped their availability and even medicines were in short supply.
But it's time to take lessons from the experience and try not to make the same mistakes again. Let us see how important asset tracking solutions can be for hospitals and healthcare establishments.
What Is an Asset Tracking Solution?
Before understanding what an asset tracking solution is, it is important to first know what asset tracking is? Asset tracking is a process of keeping track and managing physical assets effectively. The asset tracking solution provides real-time information on every asset.
You can look up the asset status, asset location, asset maintenance schedules, and other relevant information on the assets. All of this is made easier by the asset tracking solution.
There are lots of benefits of asset tracking solution, e.g. no misplacement of an asset, no asset thefts, maximized efficiency and productivity, cost-saving, no unexpected breakdowns, etc. The most important benefit is the healthier bottom line for the enterprise.
For asset tracking solutions, many techniques are available such as Barcode, QR Code (Quick Response Code), RFID (Radio-frequency identification). Such methods are used in the form of labels, chips, tags, etc.
How Asset Tracking Solution Can Be Beneficial for Hospitals?
Asset tracking solution can provide assistance to hospitals in many ways:
1. Inventory Real-Time Tracking
Hospitals staff need to be updated on the medicines and other important inventory items. With the asset tracking solution, you can put program alerts and notifications for staff.
Whenever the stock is below the set level, the system notifies the responsible person or team about it. They can take the necessary steps to refill the stocks. This process is also known as setting the reorder limit. The client can thus keep track of inventory in real-time and check the quantity of stock left or any other inventory-related information.
2. Equipment Tracking
The pandemic has seen many hospitals struggling due to a shortage of ventilators, IV pumps, etc. for treating the patients effectively. During an emergency, every ventilator and IV pump becomes critical. If you want to know how many ventilators are available at each site, the software provides instant information on the status. Such timely and accurate information can give a crucial advantage to health administration.
3. Better Decision Making
Another key advantage of this software is that it provides accurate data, aiding the hospital in better decision-making. For example, if are more ventilators available than are required, they could be sent to another site in need of the same.
Besides, the system gathers data thus enabling effective use of assets and inventory. In short, data-driven decisions are any day better than decisions based on assumptions.
4. Asset Maintenance
We know corona virus is highly contagious. Hospitals are brimming with COVID and other patients as well. Hence, keeping all rooms, equipment, and assets sanitized is all the more essential in the current pandemic scenario.
There are lots of assets, equipment, and life-saving devices requiring regular maintenance. They have to be kept clean, sanitized, and in top working condition. The challenge is to remember which asset needs maintenance or which asset has to be sanitized and so forth.
This can be a hugely challenging task. During an emergency, asset breakdowns are a strict no-no. The asset tracking solution keeps track of the assets and notifies the personnel for the necessary maintenance. For accurate asset tracking, barcodes, QR Codes, RFID, NFC, IoT techniques can be used.
5. Decreasing Asset Loss
Manual data entry on assets can lead to erroneous information on assets getting circulated and resulting in losses. For precise asset tracking, there is the Check-in Check-out feature to tell to whom the asset is assigned, where the asset is located at present when it is due for return, etc.
Overall, the system helps decrease asset loss and increase reliability. This makes the process simple and effective and the user has the capability to add all related information about an asset for faster identification, e.g. image, video or document, etc.
According to market and research “The healthcare asset management market is expected to reach USD 35.19 billion by 2023 from USD 6.89 billion in 2017, at a CAGR of 31.4%. The base year considered for the study is 2017 and the forecast period is from 2018 to 2023.”
Indeed, a lot of progress has been made. A hospital has big stocks of medicines and equipment that may not be getting used. Asset management software identifies such items and the organization can move them to where they are needed or sell it if they are not required at all. Asset management software identifies and helps in getting such items sold or disposed of properly.
In these tough times, when hospitals are struggling, laboratories are overloaded and research departments are working on the vaccine for COVID-19, they should be provided with a helping hand in the form of fail-proof systems in order to fight the pandemic. The asset tracking solution is certainly one of them.
This solution offers a lot of potentials to manage assets, equipment, and inventory efficiently and to improve the overall customer experience.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. What are the assets is a hospital on which asset tracking can be implemented?
Assets found in the hospital can be respiratory machines, patient monitors, mammography units, mobile X-ray units, blood bank refrigerators, ECG monitors ultrasound units, diagnostic equipment, laptops, examination tables, vehicles, and so on.
2. What are the kinds of inventory found in a hospital?
Gloves, masks, medicines, oxygen cylinders, sheets and covers, papers, and envelopes for documents X-ray films are among the many items of inventory found in a hospital.
3. What are the surgery-related equipment items found in the Hospital?
There are so many surgical equipment items used in the hospital like articulator, Bone chisel, Pin cutter, bone distractor, forceps, dissecting, retractor, Metzenbaum scissors, surgical sponge, curettes, vessel sealing device, ultrasonic energy device, etc.
4. Name some important asset tracking software features that are useful for hospitals?
1. Real-time asset information
2. Check-in Check out
3. Re-ordering limit
4. Alerts & Notifications