Central Supply

Ellen By Ellen, 25th Jun 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>True Stories

Working in Central Supply gives a person a new look at how a hospital is run and where patient's receive all of the supplies that are needed while they are in the hospital.

Central Supply

For anybody who has been in the hospital a patient receives many different items while staying in the hospital. Sometimes when people enter the hospital they are not able to get personal supplies to bring with them, these are items that they use every day at home. Where do people get what they need while in the hospital without having to ask family or friends to go get the items they need? The Central Supply department of any hospital has many different items that are kept in the department at all times. Each area of the hospital such as Intensive Care Unit, Pediatrics, nursery, surgery, geriatrics, psychiatry are just a few areas in the hospital that requires certain supplies to be kept in their clean utility rooms.
When I worked in Central Supply there were two other people that would work the day shift with me. We each one would pick a floor to take inventory on, come back down to the central supply department and fill up our carts and take the supplies back to the clean utility rooms. Each floor was to have only a certain amount of supplies. If they needed extra supplies they had to send an order down on the computer and we would take the extra item up. Before we would give the item out we would check their clean utility cart to see if the item was on their cart. If the floor already had the item we would take the extra item back to our department. Then we would wait for a telephone call of one of the nurse’s asking where the item was. We would then proceed to tell the nurse’s that they already had it on their cart, and they had to use it before we gave them another one.
Besides checking the supplies on all of the clean utility carts on each floor we also kept track of the ivacs and PCA’s to make sure that the ivacs or PCA’s being used were the correct one being charged. Sometimes we would find out that patients were still being charged for ivacs or PCA’s after they had left the hospital. We would take the charges off of their account, but this was after a considerable amount of detective work on our part. Many times we would have to enter a patient’s hospital room to check on the number of the ivac or PCA that were being used. Sometimes when one patient finished with a machine, instead of putting it into the dirty utility room where it could be picked up and brought back to our department and cleaned and processed properly, it would be used for another patient. Once we found the machine we would have the staff on that particular floor take the machine off of the patient and we would give them a new machine.
Many times the staff on certain floors would get mad at us when we would catch them doing something they should not be doing, so to get back at us they would hide the machines and then tell us they needed more. We caught on right away to their little trick and would take all the machines back down to our department and plug them all in. The staff would call us wanting to know where all of their machines were and why we had taken them. We would them ask why they hid the machines claiming that they did not have any for their floor. We usually did not receive a satisfactory answer.
What I did not like was the attitude many of the nurse’s had towards our department. Most of the time when they would ask for something extra for their cart we would be so busy and barely had time to get it to them. Once we managed to find the time to take the item to the floor we would find several nurse’s just sitting behind the nurse’s station eating or drinking and doing nothing else. There would be no thank you, and as we would put the extra item on their desk they would all just look at it and do nothing with the item and just leave it lye there.
Despite all the tricks and bickering back and forth I really did enjoy working in the Central Supply area. It was a wonderful experience. Knowing that I knew where certain items were to grab right away for an emergency case and get it to the doctor or nurse right away to help save a patient’s life gave me satisfaction knowing that I did my part to help someone.


Charges, Floors, Inventory, Machines, Nurses, Supplies

Meet the author

author avatar Ellen
I write children's stories. Have one book published, Working on another children's book. It is a series.

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
29th Jun 2013 (#)

those in hospital are very fortunate having someone like you around...you truly are a blessing....namaste

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author avatar Ellen
29th Jun 2013 (#)

thank you. It is interesting that over in the UK hospitals patients take their own supplies in, saving themselves so much money.
namaste to you too

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