Mobile medical carts have revolutionized how healthcare centers operate and treat patients. Due to their mobile nature, these medical carts can transport all the necessary tools and medications a nurse, doctor, or surgeon may need for his or her patient. Direct access to these materials leads to increased efficiency, more time dedicated to patient care, as well as better physician-patient relationships.
But after some time, medical carts on wheels will need maintenance to keep them at their top performance to support the medical staff’s needs. This maintenance may include everything from replacing wheels, drawers, or security systems to upgrading the amount of storage space as a practice or hospital grows.
What are the general consequences caused by out of service medical carts?
- Decrease in efficiency
- Congestion around stationary computer workspaces
- Limited mobility during treatment
- A decrease in quality of care
- Loss of time searching for the necessary tools and materials
- Return to a more time-consuming process of logging patient information and health records by hand
- Poor patient-doctor relationships
Depending on the type of medical cart that is out of service (laptop cart, traditional storage carts, crash carts), different consequences will emerge.
Out of service laptop carts: What happens next?
When laptop carts are out of service, nurses and doctors will have to turn to the limited number of stationary computer workstations throughout the hospital to reference and log patient information or developments. Or, they will be forced to completely abandon Electronic Health Records (EHR) and return to paper records. This can cause congestion and workflow issues that could potentially influence the quality of care that patients receive.
An absence of functioning laptop carts also prohibits healthcare professionals from showing patients their medical treatment plan and history directly from their bedside with the help of their EHR. Many professionals choose to do this to help facilitate clarity, on behalf of their patient, when heading into treatment.
If a patient does not understand their condition or treatment plan, they are less likely to move forward with the necessary treatment and may even develop distrust towards their physician. This decline in the patient-caregiver relationship could potentially prevent someone from getting the care they need and lead to further health complications.
Loss of medicine and tool storage: Direct & negative influences on patient care
When storage carts on wheels are out of service, the large array of medical tools and medications cannot be rolled in patient-side within a matter of seconds. Depending on the size of the healthcare facility, nurses and doctors may need to spend upwards of 10 valuable minutes locating and collecting everything they need. In emergencies, losing 10 minutes of care could be a matter of life or death.
Crash Carts removed from service: The consequences
Medical crash carts are mobile to allow medical teams to work on patients from any angle. If a crash cart is out of service, operations are not as flexible, which could complicate the process for the doctor or surgeon on duty.
No access to a mobile crash cart also hinders medical professionals from jumping into action as soon as an emergency arises, leading to dangerous complications for the patient.
These are serious issues that hospitals can avoid by receiving routine mobile medical cart support and service. At Scott-Clark Medical, we offer a limited warranty on all our products as well as retrofit projects to maintain the quality of medical carts.
Our retrofit projects help hospitals and other practices save money by upgrading their current carts without needing to purchase a new fleet of COWs and WOWs. All our refurbishment and repair services can be carried out on site, to minimize the disruption of care and workflow.
During maintenance visits, the cart will be checked for resistance against collapse and impact. This ensures that in the event of a natural disaster or similar situation, the cart will protect the materials inside.
Scott-Clark will also examine the security, ventilation (for laptop carts), and mobility systems for each cart in the fleet. If a hospital chooses Scott-Clark to carry out maintenance for their mobile medical carts, they can rest assured their carts are ready to use, all of the time. Call us at 512-756-7300 to find out how we can support your hospital or clinic.