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Geisinger Harnesses UDI for Precision and Patient Safety

Technological leap with Owens-Minor streamlines 10 hospitals and 125-plus medical facilities.

To embark on the extensive med device endeavor, Geisinger introduced QSight, a cloud-based inventory management system from Owens-Minor (Image: Getty).
To embark on the extensive med device endeavor, Geisinger introduced QSight, a cloud-based inventory management system from Owens-Minor (Image: Getty).

In the fast-paced world of healthcare, precision, and patient well-being go hand-in-hand. At the GS1 Connect Ascend Conference in Denver on June 7, Kevin Capatch, Geisinger Healthcare's director of process engineering, and Vicky Lyle, Owens and Minor VP of industry associations, discussed Geisinger Healthcare's collaboration with Owens and Minor in the Leveraging the UDI Barcode Scan for Healthcare innovation session.Capatch Lyle Page 04

Geisinger had long identified the limitations and risks associated with manual processes for storing and replenishing medical supplies across its 10 hospital campuses, 125 clinical sites, and nearly 24,000 employees. Eager to spearhead innovation and streamline its internal process, Geisinger invested strategically in state-of-the-art technology that leverages the latest identification standards in medical devices. According to Capatch, their objective was clear: eradicate human error and simplify operations, starting with vital areas like heart catheterization labs.

"Without end-to-end inventory management, a nurse in the OR might have to employ multiple tools to scan multiple implants, which is not just bothersome, it's potentially dangerous," said Capatch. "And without standards, none of the automatic identification of products is possible."

Tn T Page 2To embark on the extensive endeavor, Geisinger introduced QSight®, a cloud-based inventory management system from Owens-Minor. This system harnesses the power of barcodes affixed to medical devices, aligning seamlessly with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Unique Device Identification (UDI) Rule. Geisinger now effortlessly captures and securely stores critical information, including a product's Global Trade Item Number® (GTIN®), the most widely used UDI standard, with a simple scan. The adoption of the QSight® inventory management system brings forth a myriad of benefits, fundamentally transforming Geisinger's approach to medical supply management:

Accuracy, efficiency, and productivity

As a provider to multiple medical facilities in rural Pennsylvania, Capatch was glad to bid farewell to the era of error-prone manual record-keeping that long burdened numerous clinical professionals. Geisinger's healthcare system now embraces a seamless workflow, where a quick barcode scan seamlessly places a product into inventory. Subsequent scans meticulously track its entire lifecycle, encompassing usage, disposal, returns, or recalls. This automated process guarantees precise documentation, freeing up valuable time for healthcare professionals to prioritize what truly matters—the well-being of their patients. Img 4556

Optimized profitability

Geisinger's investment in advanced inventory management eliminates waste by preventing over-ordering and ensuring supplies are utilized before expiration. This calculated approach curtails unnecessary expenditure and facilitates automated centralized purchasing on behalf of large multi-facility institutions like Geisinger. Geisinger reaps significant fiscal benefits by streamlining procurement processes that positively impact its expansive healthcare ecosystem.

Elevated patient safety

At Geisinger, Capatch explains that patient safety takes prominence. With the QSight system, healthcare professionals can rest assured that all vital tissue or implants required for treatment are readily available. Clinicians maintain meticulous and accurate records when interfacing with electronic medical records (EMR) and individual electronic health records (EHR). This record-keeping fortifies patient safety, ensuring comprehensive care while empowering healthcare providers with instant access to critical information.

Future-proof planning and implementation

Geisinger's inventory management initiative lays a solid foundation for system-wide data quality. This forward-thinking approach sets the stage for future operations and initiatives, including accurate and efficient recall management and advanced analytics. The provider envisions harnessing the power of data to optimize cost structures and enhance patient outcomes, positioning themselves as pioneers in an ever-evolving healthcare landscape.

Geisinger Healthcare's collaboration with Owens & Minor and adoption of the QSight inventory management system personifies their unwavering commitment to innovation and excellence. By embracing cutting-edge technology and bidding farewell to manual processes, Geisinger created high standards in accuracy, efficiency, and patient safety. 

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