Background Medical gases (MG) have traditionally been managed by maintenance units. With the new legislation, this management has been taken over by the pharmacy departments.
Purpose To measure the economic impact and describe the efficiency measures implemented in the management of MG.
Material and methods Follow-up study pre-post intervention (pre-intervention phase January to October 2014 and post-intervention phase January to October 2015). The procedure was performed by the pharmacy of a hospital to improve efficiency in the management of MG (oxygen, nitrous oxide and medical air). The efficiency measures implemented were: (1) development of a protocol to standardise management of medical gases; (2) development of software to follow the traceability of distributed bottles of oxygen, reduce stock and know immobilised stocks in real time; (3) reduction of oxygen delivery pressure from 6 bar to 4.5 bar; and (4) incorporation of oxygen cylinders with a digital gauge that allows easy real time reading of gas consumption. The economic impact was obtained after comparing the costs (€) associated with the consumption of MG before and after the intervention of pharmacy services in the management of MG.
Results The costs associated with the use of MG in the pre-intervention phase were: €152 621 oxygen, €96 140 nitrous oxide and €7490 medical air, and in the post-intervention phase were: €114 814 oxygen, €60 973 nitrous oxide and €8728 medical air. Following the implementation of efficiency measures, the costs of oxygen consumption (€-37 807) and nitrous oxide (€-35 176) decreased. However, they increased for medical air (+€1238). Total gas consumption costs from January to October 2014 were €256 252 and from January to October 2015 €192 892, reducing the total costs by 24.7%. The management carried out by technical services during the pre-intervention phase did not generate additional costs for the hospital, nor did the services carried out by pharmacy in the post-intervention phase. Therefore, these costs (ie, personnel) were not included in the analysis. There were no differences in the quality or price of MG before and after the intervention as the MG supplier was the same.
Conclusion The intervention of the pharmacy services led to a considerable reduction in the overall cost of consumption of MG, greater traceability in the distribution of bottles, reduction of stock and greater efficiency in the management of MG.
References and/or Acknowledgements
Domínguez-Gil Hurlé A. Farm Hosp 2005;29:300-222
References and/or AcknowledgementsNo conflict of interest.
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