A mobile asset sharing policy for hospitals with real time locating systems
Demircan-Yildiz, Ece Arzu
Fescioğlu Ünver, Nilgün
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BACKGROUND: Each year, hospitals lose a considerable amount of time and money due to misplaced mobile assets. In addition the assets which remain in departments that frequently use them depreciate early, while other assets of the same type in different departments are rarely used. A real time locating system can prevent these losses when used with appropriate asset sharing policies. OBJECTIVE: This research quantifies the amount of time a medium size hospital saves by using real time locating system and proposes an asset selection rule to eliminate the asset usage imbalance problem. METHODS: The asset selection rule proposed is based on multi objective optimization techniques. The effectiveness of this rule on asset to patient time and asset utilization rate variance performance measures were tested using discrete event simulation method. RESULTS: Results show that the proposed asset selection rule improved the usage balance significantly. Sensitivity analysis showed that the proposed rule is robust to changes in demand rates and user preferences. CONCLUSIONS: Real time locating systems enable saving considerable amount of time in hospitals, and they can still be improved by integrating decision support mechanisms. Combining tracking technology and asset selection rules helps improve healthcare services.