It is rare but gratifying to come across an improvement opportunity that is large, easy to understand and demonstrate, and apparently universally needed in ORs and hospital operations in general: improvement in supplies management. If you have spent your career exclusively within hospitals, it may be hard to appreciate how dysfunctional the common practice of “Par Level” supplies management really is, or how other businesses would not even consider such a practice. For American hospitals alone, the amount of waste, i.e. work that is not really needed or that could be easily eliminated, related to supplies management boggles the mind and may total not millions but billions of dollars each year. We don’t expect you to take our word for it, however, and in the introductory chapters we’ll provide you with the tools to demonstrate the benefits for yourself.
This book describes the Kanban method in detail from the OR perspective and for application in the OR. However, the contents of this book apply to the hospital in general as well, and the Kanban method has application in Central Stores, on nursing floors, in the ED, and any place where supplies are used and stored.
The objective of this book is to:
- Provide you with an understanding of Lean Supplies Management and its application in the OR Suite.
- Supply you all the necessary definitions of key terms like Kanban, ABC codes, RFID and the many other terms that you should become familiar with.
- Describe the process of implementing a Kanban system, based on the Hospital Supplies Roadmap.
- Provide a script for a simulation on how to demonstrate the difference between Par Level and Kanban methods.
Place Supplies Management within the largest context of a Lean initiative with other initiatives like Quick Changeover, a Lean Management System, and Kaizen.
This book, like all the other books in this series, will deliver much more value when its content is discussed with your team members as you work on actual Supplies Management projects.
Supplies Management in the OR
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