Zebra Mobile Computers Support Digitization in Healthcare

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Zebra Mobile Computers Support Digitization in Healthcare

With Zebra
December 05, 2023
3 min
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Paracelsus Clinics Realize the Dynamic, Digital Hospital

At a glance:

  • 3 mobile computers by Zebra deployed: TC21-HC, TC26-HC and TC52-HC for digital procurement
  • Integrated scanners, long battery life
  • Real-time data on inventory and demand
  • ROI achieved after 12 months

Paracelsus Clinics, an association of 37 healthcare facilities at 19 locations across Germany, has mastered the task of digitizing complex hospital processes and implementing a state-of-the-art, group-wide standardized ordering platform in the cloud. With its acute hospitals, rehabilitation clinics and outpatient facilities, the Paracelsus Group is one of the largest private hospital operators – whose most important procurement processes now run digitally thanks to Zebra Technologies.

An Inconsistent System Mix

Paracelsus Group had turned to Zebra in 2019 because of problems in data collection, purchasing and procurement logistics. The clinics had no overview of their goods consumption, no consistent purchasing processes and little cost control. Several different systems were in place for handling data and stock. “It was pure data chaos,” recalls Anjali Sherlin Menezes, commissioner of purchasing at Paracelsus Group.

One App and Three Mobile Computer Types

The new solution was designed to improve procurement processes. To ensure that clinic employees have easy access to the functions they need in their daily work, Zebra partner COMED developed a customized Android app that is installed on mobile computers. The devices double as mobile barcode scanners to record consumed or delivered materials virtually at the touch of a button. For the devices, three types from Zebra’s Android portfolio were chosen: the TC21-HC (Wi-Fi connectivity), TC26-HC (Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity) and TC52-HC mobile computers. Long battery life, a familiar user interface and the robust design of the mobile computers immediately convinced the responsible parties.

Agile Rollout During the Pandemic

The Paracelsus Group introduced the central materials management system across the group within 15 months. Implementation began in the rehabilitation clinics in March 2020, followed by the acute clinics at intervals of often just four weeks, including training for 50 to 100 users per site. Go live was successfully completed in June 2021.

Zebra mobile computers are now being used in all areas where materials are handled, from receiving in the warehouse to the wards. For example, all incoming and outgoing goods are recorded digitally by scanner. Requirement messages for consumables such as bandages and gloves can be posted in seconds directly at the point of need. The Paracelsus Group has set up direct interfaces with some of its 400 suppliers. Webshops for physiotherapy supplies, occupational therapy supplies, IT hardware supplies and more are seamlessly connected to the ordering platform. Further connections are in the planning stage.

Real-time Data is the Recipe for a Multitude of Benefits

The solution has paid for itself in less than 12 months. With the centralized inventory management system, the group has standardized its ordering processes and established strict processes for strategic sourcing. As a result, annual ancillary ordering costs have dropped by a five-figure amount; procure-to-pay process times have been cut in half. The clinics have an overview of their current inventory levels at all times. Duplicate orders are avoided and the number of products that need to be discarded due to expired sell-by dates is minimal. The Paracelsus Group can now react flexibly to supply chain problems in the market and quickly find alternatives if a product is not available.

Advantages for Administration and Inventory

In addition, the platform has drastically reduced the administration effort. The automated documentation, ordering and billing processes alone resulted in a time saving of 90 minutes per day, which is divided between the operating room, purchasing/warehouse and financial accounting departments. The improvements in everyday work can be felt in many places.

“The new solution improves patient care and helps our teams work more efficiently. We are very pleased with the success of this project.”

Anjali Sherlin Menezes,

Acting Head of Purchasing Division

at Paracelsus Kliniken

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