How to Choose the Best Asset Management Software for Healthcare Equipment?
Finding asset management software for healthcare can be a daunting task. The software must not only meet strict regulatory standards but also seamlessly integrate into healthcare-specific workflows.
In this blog text, you will find our tips on how to choose the best asset management software for healthcare.
1. Evaluate your current asset management
Begin by evaluating your current asset management tools and processes. If rely on spreadsheets, go through the information that you have. This is an important phase as it tells you how many devices you have and if some critical assets are not tracked at all. It is also recommended to list all of your current medical equipment sellers and maintenance providers that you are using to get a complete picture.
If you don’t yet have an asset management system or process, don’t worry. These simple tips will help you get started on setting one up effectively.
2. Think about asset coverage
After the current situation is known, consider what assets you need and want to track and manage. In the healthcare sector, regulations dictate what devices need to be tracked throughout their lifecycle.
Remember that all medical equipment that is used to deliver care needs to be monitored and maintained according to manufacturers’ instructions. There are thousands of different medical equipment that vary depending on the healthcare services you provide.
Some examples include:
- Manual and electric wheelchairs
- Hospital and surgery beds
- Walkers, crutches, canes, etc.
- Imaging machines (X-rays, MRI scans, CT scans)
- Pressure mattresses
- Pumps (insulin, breast, medication)
- Traction equipment
- Patient Lifts
- Kidney machines
- Oxygen tanks
- Analyzers (blood, chemistry, drug)
- Blood pressure monitors
Although not necessarily required by law, other healthcare-related devices are useful to be tracked as well. Some examples could be storage cabinets, transportation carts, various monitors, and lighting.
3. Focus on workflows
After the basics are clear, you can dive deeper into the solutions. Asset management software comes with a diverse range of features. For healthcare organizations, it’s important to focus on specific workflows rather than just individual features. These key workflows include:
- Keeping inventory up-to-date so that necessary medical devices are found when needed
- Performing scheduled maintenance according to each device manufacturer’s instructions
- Carefully storing all relevant maintenance and calibration etc. documents for each device
- Tracking and prevention of device misuse and faults that may cause patient safety issues
- Systematically training all employees to operate different medical equipment being used
4. Ensure regulatory compliance
As mentioned earlier, asset management software is an important tool for following rules like the IVDR in Europe and CAPA in the USA. If your new asset management system doesn’t meet these rules, you’ll need to switch to one that does. If you are not totally sure about the regulations, you can always ask for more information from your various national healthcare organizations or a healthcare software provider.
5. Prioritise security
In the healthcare field, keeping private information safe is very important. Choose an asset management software that has a strong focus on data security. The easiest way to know which software is safe to use is to look for ISO 27001 or SOC2 certification. These are international data security standards and companies with these certifications are carefully audited by third-party auditors. In Europe, GDPR compliance is also something that needs to be in place.
6. Check usability and automation capabilities
Choose software that is extremely easy to use and works well on different devices. The ease of use cannot be emphasized enough. This is especially the case with healthcare as the healthcare staff is typically not that comfortable with IT systems. This is also why the best user experience typically comes from software that is browser-based. This means that the users do not need to download any applications to their smartphones.
In short, the best asset management software should make it simple to add new devices, update your inventory, and keep you informed about upcoming maintenance. A thumb rule is that with good software, creating a new device or updating device data should not take more than 1 minute.
Also, keep in mind that integrations and automation make work a lot easier. With the right software, you can automate regular tasks and keep manual work to a minimum.
7. Compare pricing
The final step is to compare the pricing. Some software providers will charge per user, while others might charge based on how many assets you have. It is also quite typical that additional costs like implementation or add-ons are sold separately. Understanding the total price of the service is important when you are comparing different software.
We hope that this article helps you in selecting the best asset management solution for your organization. For further information about IDR and to see it in action, feel free to book a brief demo here. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.
Written by Mikko Lehmus. Mikko works as CEO of IDR. IDR is the most versatile asset lifecycle management software for IT devices and healthcare. Read more about IDR here.