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Case Study

John Muir Hospital

Inventory Management with Safety in Mind

John Muir Hospital is one of the largest Northern California surgical trauma centers. The John Muir Surgical Services / Sterile Processing Department stores and picks all of the medical equipment, medical supplies, implant and surgical instruments required for every surgery and medical procedure at the hospital and off-campus surgical centers. The inventory was stored on mobile wire shelving and carts that took up a lot of space and made picking very difficult in terms of reaching, stooping, and lifting materials.

Concept Development:
The Systems Group of Toyota Material Handling was commissioned to design and build a new storage and picking system for the sterile processing area to improve “Safety”, “Inventory Management”, and “Space Utilization” in the various storage areas.

After finalizing the design, the TMH Systems Group provided all of the required upgrades to the facility that were needed to pass the permit process, including fire code compliance and structural engineering to meet California’s strict codes for earthquake protection.

Once connected to the local area network John Muir’s IT and purchasing departments have complete visibility to all inventory in the carousels and run a very successful “Just-In-Time” inventory replenishment program using the Hanel advanced control system. Products are bar coded into and out of the system providing a recording of all pick or restock transactions made by employee I.D by date and time is stamped.

Another key benefit of the new system was improved worker ergonomics. Product is now presented to the picker at an ergonomic pick window for all picks and put-away of product. Worker injuries are reduced significantly since every item as picked at a friendly height or golden zone. Product security is enhanced because the picking personnel must use password key entry through the microprocessor controller on each unit.

In 2007 John Muir Hospital increased their storage capacity in the Sterile Processing Department and added two additional Rotomats which were connected to the to the existing system controls. This additional new order is a testament to how well the Hanel System has performed for John Muir and has shown that the TMH Systems Group's on-going service commitment to them is working well.

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