Team 403: Improving Surgical Supply Workflow

Team 403: Improving Surgical Supply Workflow

The M.T. Mustian Center at Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare (TMH) has a disorganized medical supply room. Staff are frustrated when checking out supplies for surgical services, in particular.

This disorganization increases the risk of not getting proper medical supplies to surgeons in a timely manner. This directly affects the quality of patient treatment and could be the difference between life or death. The supply room’s disorder also makes returning supplies more difficult. For this reason, we improved how surgical supplies are stored in the supply room and created a new system for receiving and restocking supplies.

Medical supplies are always going to waste. Surgeons tend to order too many supplies and usually don’t use them all. These supplies are eventually wasted due to expiration, contamination or damage. Just one medical supply item could cost up to $10,000, contributing to millions of dollars in waste each year. We designed a plan that will decrease over-ordering to reduce waste and improve organization of supplies.

We determined the return rate for supplies and used this data to determine which supplies are being wasted. By decreasing the number of supplies by 25%, we found more space in the supply room to properly organize necessary supplies. TMH plans to use our solutions to improve medical staff job performance, limit the purchase of unneeded supplies and decrease waste. We believe our solutions can be applied to other departments in TMH and other hospitals, as well.

Charles Lee Brown, Jr., Clarke Miley & Jessica Thomas

Beth Gray

Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare