Thank your materials manager during national ASC month

Trends are showing that care is moving out of the hospital and into non-acute settings.

In fact, in a recent survey conducted by Becker’s Hospital Review in partnership with Cardinal Health, over 60% of hospital c-suite and supply chain leaders said that they anticipate patient care to shift the ambulatory surgery center setting over the next 12 months. This shows that now more than ever, it is crucial to recognize the importance of material managers within ASCs. 

Here are the many roles that materials managers play all day, every day:

  • Materials manager: Just as their title implies, materials managers handle ordering, receiving, and stocking the products that clinicians rely on for every case. Without professional management, inventory levels may not match utilization needs. So the surgery center could be at risk for stockouts and tying up too much cash in inventory.
  • Case picker: Who is looking at the next day’s schedule, pulling the right preference cards, picking the right supplies and then organizing them all in totes, baskets or carts? Who can surgery centers count on to help ensure that the right supplies are ready for every case, every time? The materials manager.
  • Sterile processing technician: Materials managers also focus on safety as they prepare instruments for each case. So when clinicians turn to the instrument tray, they know every item is clean and ready to use.
  • Scrub technician: Many materials managers have a history as scrub techs, so they feel right at home lending a hand in the OR on busy days. From setting up the instrument table to assisting the surgeon, these materials managers help boost efficiency and keep the OR on schedule.
  • OR turnover expert: To further increase turnover efficiency, materials managers help with clean up in the OR and opening supplies for the next case.
  • Instrument repair manager: Imagine a surgeon reaching for an instrument at a critical time only to realize it’s not in proper shape for usage. To help ensure that this doesn’t happen, materials managers keep surgical instruments in good working order so they’re always ready when the surgeon needs them.
  • General troubleshooter: You never know where the next problem is going to arise. Issues can occur with equipment, supplies, instruments—you name it. But clinicians and surgery center staff know that they can turn to their materials manager for a solution.
  • Efficiency expert: Materials managers are always looking for new opportunities to control costs and streamline workflow—all to help the surgery center provide better care. For example, materials managers work with their distributors to introduce clinically equivalent products with the potential to lower costs.

Surgery center materials managers may wear a lot of hats, but they all share a common goal: to improve the quality of care for every patient. To celebrate all that they do, we’ve created resources you can use to say “thank you” to materials managers. Click here to see all the ways you can share your appreciation with your materials manager and ASC team.

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