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Healthcare logistics

17/02/2022

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

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A complex world indeed

It’s not necessarily the case that everyone involved in healthcare understands all aspects of it: behind the word ‘logistics’ lies something that is truly diversified.

Before we write about one of our products, we would like to disseminate a little knowledge, to make everyone more aware of the complexity, sensitivity, costs and challenges surrounding the management of materials used in a healthcare facility.

The FH pentagon: the generic cycle of logistics inside a healthcare facility

Very different facilities and goods

At the heart of healthcare logistics are the reception, transport, storage and distribution of sensitive, expensive and dangerous materials, which come in all shapes and sizes and are often over-packaged (making the shape even more complex).

All this in environments that can be reconfigured quite often: think of wards getting bigger, being reduced or even moved elsewhere (the current pandemic clearly shows us this); think of units such as the pharmacy, which can be centralised or organised into satellite pharmacies. And let’s also consider the complexity of drug packaging: they don’t necessarily stay the same. Boxes change, sizes and shapes of containers for liquids change, and the shape of syringes (from narrow and long to shorter and wider) can change as the volume is the same.

Things are complicated by the fact that the occupancy rate of a ward, even seasonally, obviously also changes the flow of material. To give an example: a trauma ward in a ski resort is probably more busy in winter than in summer. All this is to keep in mind how many different factors come into play when dealing with logistics in a healthcare environment. Nor should it be forgotten that the needs of a large university hospital are different from those of a clinic or a nursing home.

 

the ISO logo: a home for standards

Standards: a valuable ally

This inherently complex world finds a valuable ally in standards. One standard that has become established in hospital logistics is undoubtedly ISO 600×400, which imposes these two measurements in mm. Manufacturers can vary the material, the height, the shape of the walls (solid, grid, perforated, etc.) but not the two basic dimensions. And this facilitates transport and storage: an ISO 600×400 container is removed from a shelving unit, placed in a transport trolley and taken to a storage column: 3 different elements that have no difficulty “accepting” the container in question.

LOGU184DAL: a double LOGU 4 mobile storage cabinet, with 600 mm front, that is fully compatible with the ISO 600x400 standard

LOGU: the mobile storage cabinet

A new tool developed by FH now enters the world of hospital logistics: it is our simplest solution for the storage and handling of goods and equipment in a healthcare environment. LOGU is fully compatible with the ISO 600×400 standard: this means that there are several trays, baskets and containers available. LOGU is available in 1 height (180 cm) and 2 widths (1 or 2 columns) and can have a 400 or 600 mm front. There are no front closures. The multilayer side panels are available in 3 colours: blue, grey and green.

LOGU186EB: a single LOGU 6 mobile storage cabinet, with 400 mm front, that is fully compatible with the ISO 600x400 standard

Not only for hospitals

The ISO 600×400 standard is aimed at the entire healthcare sector: nursing homes, clinics, day hospitals and polyclinics are environments where LOGU can make a difference. A LOGU can be used to replenish stock in a ward by transporting material from the central warehouse to a rack. The beauty of LOGU is that it can be the vehicle, but at the same time also the storage cabinet itself. All you have to do is take the empty ward LOGU to the warehouse, fill it up and then keep it in a place not accessible to the public in its “home” ward. For goods that are not susceptible to theft, LOGU can also be left in the corridor because of its small footprint (e.g. during bed linen changes). Using ISO 600×400 compliant trays, LOGU can also be an excellent vehicle for distributing meals.

Get in touch with us

For more information on the products we have mentioned, or to discuss the most useful configuration for your facility, please get in touch with us here:
Contacts – Francehopital

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