general question on control of supplies

Hello, we are in process of changing our policy regarding supplies-related to access by employees. trying to best control excess loss on supplies being taken out to non Medicare patients. I have given my input as how done in prior agencies where I have worked but would love feedback on how your agency manages supplies and if it is helping with cutting costs.
thanks in advance!!


  • edited May 2017
    This was a very large problem for us. Getting it under control caused some
    initial disgruntled reactions from employees, but eventually worked well
    for both the company and the employees.

    We had all car boxes brought into office. We developed a specific supply
    box (called a "Car Stock"). This box contained supplies that a person
    might need to do regular visits or COMMON issues. E.g., standard supplies
    to do a lab draw, supplies for a skin tear, wet-to-dry. Specific numbers
    to each supply. If someone uses a supply out of their car stock, a note is
    sent to office to replenish it, verify that order was received for the
    supply, and appropriate billing was done. The office has it ready for them
    when they come to office. Some of our office staff were shocked at the
    large abundance of supplies that were out in cars. Some of our nurses were
    surprised that some of it was expired!

    We also assigned different employees to do an inventory of supplies out at
    patient houses. We then tried to work the inventory down by not
    automatically sending new supplies. Some of our nurses were shocked at how
    many supplies some of the patients had. Now, an inventory is done either
    weekly or QOW. The form shows current inventory and what is needed. I
    developed a list of the most common items so that the nurses only had to
    count and record a number-- not remember what a supply was called, write it
    down, count, and then record the numbers.

    Doing all of this showed the field staff that we were working WITH them to
    reduce costs and actually make their lives easier. It quickly stopped
    being a thing to grumble about and became a relief. The office staff is
    now the only ones who get supplies-- and they are recording the amounts
    sent. The CEO approves all supply orders. We are working as a team to
    reduce unnecessary costs.

    Hope this helps.

    Daniel P. Clark, RN
  • thank you so much! this is very similar to the way we did it at a previous agency where I worked. We didn't do the home inventory but I can see where that would be very helpful as I know when I was in the field, I would go to some homes that had enough supplies for months. it is easy to happen, no one wants to get to a home out in the middle of nowhere and find no supplies so they take extra, but we have got to get a hold on the cost, it is very high as it is without the waste. Again, thank you for your time and I will share this with the Director.
  • Is there is any problem to change policy regarding supplies-related to access by employees.

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