De zorgkar

Central in care, source of waste

With the 'De Zorgkar' project, UZ Gent and VOKA aim to overhaul the nursing mobile workstation through innovations in stock management processes and staff sensitisation. The result: less waste and less pressure on the care sector's budget.

The care trolley (the nursing mobile workstation) is central to healthcare provision: it brings materials to the patient. Every department in a hospital has several care trolleys, but because of overstock on the trolleys, a lot of material expires, which is a source of waste and wastage. Because nurses want to be prepared for all possible care needs, they often start putting a (too) large stock of material on the cart. A project at UZ Gent showed that around 1,000 euros per cart of material is wasted annually.

With the 'De zorgkar' project, UZ Gent and VOKA want to redesign the system for storing care material, focusing on innovation of the stock management process in care departments and raising staff awareness. By analysing the replenishment process, possibilities for standardisation and sustainability will be determined. Subsequently, the hospital staff will be sensitised to work in a new, sustainable way so as to avoid waste and reduce the pressure on the healthcare budget.

In time, the new system can be extended to other healthcare institutions such as residential care centres, community health centres and home nursing services. The more institutions use waste alert, the more waste can be avoided and thus the impact on social and environmental costs decreases.

Universitair Ziekenhuis Gent

Partners VOKA Project Services vzw