In late 2012 the planned reconfiguration work within Theatres and ITU at Royal Sussex County Hospital meant that planning would need to get under way for the design of a new, more fit for purpose ITU store room.
The old store area, though large in size, was poorly design and inefficient. Though the staff worked applying best practice in the area they had available, effective stock management, stock location and stock access was seldom an easy task. Paul Martin, ITU Technologist, was tasked with arranging and consulting on the new design, and as such brought in Medspace Solutions, specialists in clinical storage, to work up a design which would fulfil the needs of the department.
During the first consultation with Medspace, Paul arranged a tour of the existing storage area, and highlighted some of the problems they were having, as well as the stock the department was holding and any future stock increases they were expecting to experience. During this first meeting it was decided that the design of the new area would need to primarily focus on:
Communication and planning are a very important part of any project, and so being able to arrange meetings and amend designs frequently are essential and Medspace were happy to accommodate. Also being able to share ideas and knowledge helped make this a successful project.Paul Martin, ITU Technologist
Following on from this initial design plans were drawn up, this included a mix of modular storage cabinetry (HTM71) for smaller items, and a track based shelving system for the bulkier items. During a second meeting between the Trust and Medspace the design were tweaked, with a couple of cabinets being substituted for free standing shelving. At this point it was thought the design of the area would now fulfill the objectives set out above. With the installation scheduled for the weekend of 15-16th November 2013 Paul made the decision, a few weeks in advance of this date, to produce a labelled layout plan of the area ahead of the installation.
This allowed for the staff moving stock into the new area to be prepared, and have advanced knowledge of where items were to be located. This meticulous planning allowed for an exceptionally quick turn around from the area being installed to the point at which it could effectively function as a storage area.
Two months on from the install – No matter how you plan to move into a new store room there is always a lot more work moving the stock back in, but due to prior knowledge of layout we had an idea of where items would go and so this made life easier. After the initial “get the stock in and sort it out properly later” period, we have now established where items should be stored and amended the plan and stock lists accordingly, and working with Medspace sorted out the divider and drawer requirements. Next time I would definitely go for a pre-labelled drawer system as this will save time.
Working with Paul, who had a clear vision of what he wanted achieved, has been a very enjoyable and rewarding process. Identifying the problems with an existing area in order to establish objectives within the new one is a sure way to ensure that an effective solution is achieved. I will and have been passing on Paul’s idea of during up a stock location plan ahead of installation.Steve Wolf, Medspace Solutions