Maintaining an accurate medical inventory list is critical, whether you’re expanding your current medical practice or just reorganizing it.
After all, even if you have a tiny practice, you’ll need to keep track of a lot of things: supplies, materials, and high-value assets like equipment and machinery. We’ll show you how to manage medical inventory using a few different methods.
One way to manage medical inventory is by using a physical inventory system. This involves keeping track of your inventory on paper or in a spreadsheet. You’ll need to physically count everything in your inventory and update your records accordingly. This method is best for small businesses with simple inventory systems.
Another way to manage medical inventory is by using an electronic inventory system. This can be as simple as using barcodes and scanners to track your inventory, or as complex as implementing a full-fledged enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. Electronic inventory systems are more accurate and efficient than physical systems, but they can be more expensive to set up and maintain.
First, let’s talk about how to create an inventory list. This is actually pretty simple: just make a list of all the items you need to keep track of, along with their quantities. You can use a spreadsheet for this, or even just a piece of paper. Once you have your list, make sure to update it regularly so that it stays accurate.
Now, let’s talk about how to physically manage your medical inventory. One option is to keep everything in a central location, such as a storage room or closet. This can be convenient, but it can also be chaotic if not managed properly. A better option is to assign each item on your inventory list to a specific location. That way, you’ll always know where to find things when you need them.
The professionals at Avacare Medical tell us that another good way is to use barcodes to manage your inventory. This is a great way to keep track of items, especially if you have a lot of them. Barcodes can be scanned to quickly add or remove items from your inventory list.
Software As a Management Tool
There are also some great software options out there for managing medical inventory. One option is eClinicalWorks’ Inventory Management System, which is designed specifically for medical practices. This software allows you to track inventory levels, set up alerts for low quantities, and generate reports.
Another option is Infor’s CloudSuite Healthcare (formerly known as Lawson Health). This software includes an inventory management module that helps you track medical supplies, equipment, and other assets. CloudSuite Healthcare also includes modules for financials, human resources, and patient care, so it’s a great option if you’re looking for an all-in-one solution.
How To Decide What Inventory To Buy
Now that we’ve covered how to manage your medical inventory, let’s talk about how to decide what inventory to buy. This can be tricky, especially if you’re just starting out. A good place to start is by talking to your vendors and suppliers. They can give you some great insight into what items are selling well and what items are in high demand.
You should also keep an eye on industry trends. For example, if you notice that more and more practices are using electronic medical records (EMRs), then you might want to invest in some EMR-compatible equipment. Or, if you see that new treatments are becoming popular, you might want to stock up on the supplies needed to provide those treatments.
Of course, you’ll also need to consider your budget when deciding what inventory to buy. Try to strike a balance between what you need and what you can afford. It’s also a good idea to have some extra cash on hand in case you need to make a last-minute purchase.
Managing medical inventory can be challenging, but it’s definitely doable. By following the tips in this article, you’ll be well on your way to keeping track of all your supplies, materials, and assets. And, as always, talk to your vendors and suppliers for insights into what’s selling well and what’s in high demand. Good luck!