Student Dissertation

Agency : Medical consumables, billing, wards & ICUs

Objective : To map the process of billing of consumables in wards & ICUs and to identify any deviations in the process. To find the proportion of consumables used in wards specialty wise. Recommend strategies- methods or ways to streamline the process.

Background : Billing plays an important role for both the hospital and the patients. It generates revenue for the hospital. From patient’s perspective, it leads to patient satisfaction, firm belief in the organization and loyalty towards it. Thus, there occurs a symbiotic relationship between the two. Billing errors occur because of mistakes done in manually entering a service or not recording the information correctly. Medical Consumables are products used for therapeutic purpose that is used to assist in restoring patient’s health and are not pharmaceutical, not reusable but are cost-effective.

Methodology : Study design was descriptive in nature. It involved prospective data collection of consumables used on patients admitted in wards & ICUs. Study area included nursing stations, multibeds and ICUs (SICU, MICU and CCU). By convenient sampling, a sample size of 132 patients was taken for the study to understand the billing of consumables on patients. Secondary data of past 4 months was also collected to find out the most used consumables of the hospitals as well as the usage of consumables specialty wise in the wards. Patients excluded from the study were day care patient’s i.e. emergency, chemotherapy, dialysis, cathlab and outpatient department patients.

Findings : Out of the total 132 cases observed, it was found that in approximately 46% cases were under charged and 17% were over charged. Major consumables that were found to be under and over charged were gloves non- sterile, syringes, microsheild hand rubs, needles, IV cannula’s, facemask etc. From the study, it was also found that orthopedics consumes approximately 35.51% of consumables in the wards, followed by cardiology and others.

Recommendations : After the thorough analysis of the collected data, it was found that issuing of the consumables to the patient was not up to the mark whether used or not, that lead to revenue loss as well as dissatisfaction among patients due to high bill of consumables. Online indenting of consumables i.e. directly billing the consumables to the patients instead of issuing it can help in preventing the under or over charging of consumables. A consumable track sheet can also be introduced to keep an account of the used consumables undersigned by the ward staff.