Once the classificatory system is in operation, and the policies arestated, a computer programme will help automation by working out the inventory levels, order quantity and order date. This is followed by two chapters which are case studies related to the samesubject by Dr A.V. Srinivasan, ‘Hospital Stores Organisation and Pharmacy’ and‘Selective Systems of Materials Management in a Hospital—Case Illustration’.Making use of live data, he illustrates how pharmacy and hospital material storesare organised by structure and policy. All systems discussed by Mr V. Venkat Reddy are illustrated by item name and calculation in the second case study.Mr K.P. Kumar has an interesting and novel approach to derive inventory policiesfor drugs in a hospital pharmacy. He extends the classificatory systems presentedearlier, uses combinatorial analysis to reduce the classes, and put them intodecision boxes, where the policy and the person in the hierarchy who is responsiblefor its implementation are clearly stated.
The chapter titled ‘MBASIC System for Effective Drug Management’ by Kumar is a good example of decision-support system for drug inventory management. The availability of inventory management software, computer professionals and suitable hardware signal the application of this effective technique.Customer Relations Management is now a hot topic in marketing and IT. MsPooja Elizabeth George has discussed it in easy language and applied to hospitalmanagement in the chapter, ‘Customer Experience Management—A MarketingInitiative’. She has gone a step farther from image with and retention of customersof CRM to learning and adoption of their experience. Hospitals in private sector increasingly face competition and the customers (patients and referees) are gettingmore information from internet and are demanding.
She has shown how to survivein such an environment by building competitive strength. She has supported therationality with observation and a structure. This and the next chapter are valuableadditions of latest knowledge to this edition. A medical record is a compilation of pertinent facts about a patient’s life andhealth history, including past and present illnesses and treatment given by healthprofessionals contributing to the patient’s care. It is the personal property of thepatient and ensures continuity of treatment. The chapter, ‘Medical Records’, by Ms Mamta Edwards, covers the purpose, uses and value of medical records. Theauthor indicates who is responsible for the construction, maintenance,administration of medical records and related legal issues. The formats in whichthe records are to be maintained, the types of data, and the retention principle are also covered. This chapter concludes with future developments andcomputerisation of records.Operations Research is a multidisciplinary approach for problem-solving andimproving efficiency.
It uses some of the proven mathematical models to a situation, whether it is simple or complex. This has been used very widely in industries andin Johns Hopkins Hospital, as early as the fifties. Its application has becomeeasier now with the availability of powerful PCs and relevant software. Its utility is so high that it is a core subject in every management curriculum. Dr K.N.Gaur, in the chapter, ‘Operations Research in Hospitals’, traces the history of this approach to provide rationality, makes a listing of the major techniquesincluded under this head, and describes how to build a model. In the second part of his paper, he shows how to apply selected Operations Research techniques tohospital situations. These are Allocation Methods, Queueing Models, Replacement Models and Network Techniques.Dr Jeet Patwari has applied the concepts of expert system of decision scienceand developed a prototype for diagnosis.
He has shown the intricacies of thispowerful tool, which is difficult to apply. He has given an easy introduction to the concept, shown the steps of diagnosis by taking an example of a specific diseaseand takes the reader through a sequence of computer outputs of the procedure. This chapter, ‘Computer Aided Diagnosis—Expert Systems’, will show not only a method to develop computerized diagnosis using a database and computer but also create an interest and eagerness to build expert system models in healthcare. This chapter will be of special interest to IT developers and clinicians withresearch orientation. A hospital produces a large amount of waste, some of them are pollutants andhazardous to health. In India, a large proportion of hospitals and beds are locatedin urban areas, where the civic conditions may not be at desirable level of efficiency.In the chapter titled ‘Hospital Waste Management’, Dr Homi Mehta presents readily implementable systems.
He groups the wastes into different types, in terms of their end effect, and gives a classificatory scheme to segregate them, and eventually manage them in a manner so as to prevent unwanted after-effects. This chapter deals with the collection, disposal and treatment of waste. One aspect of wastemanagement is prevention—how to minimise waste creation. This also forms a part of the chapter. Managing hospital wastes has not been getting the attentionit requires from the civic authorities, and also from hospitals in the country. Dr Mehta presents a case study to illustrate the application of his scheme at the endof this chapter.Dr U.V.N. Das looks at the need and advantage of keeping the patient comfortable, happy and contented. ‘Patient Relations in Hospitals’ is addressed to all hospital staff, irrespective of their rank and location. He deals with eachfunction in a hospital, and shows how a patient can be kept happy.
This, and thefollowing chapters are relevant and apt in today’s world of consumerism. While Dr Das touches upon creating a ‘delighted customer (patient/ attendant)’,Dr N. Rajaram and Ms Swati Pandey, in their well-researched paper on another aspect of consumerism, insist on the need and importance for ‘Medical Audit andits Administration’. Starting from listing the acknowledged attributes of medicalaudit, they set up protocols for audit, identify its elements, discuss the audit types, methods and monitoring techniques. They discuss the constraints inauditing and difficulties in implementation. An informative part of the paper istheir opinion survey of doctors on medical audit. They express the urgency, needand importance of this management process with the quotation: ‘There is a timeto end contemplation and a time to begin’.
The opening of the European Common Market to Indian industries brought along with it standardisation and third-party certification. Total Quality Management and Control of Variation were widely propagated among theindustries—one more aspect of consumerism, ‘the value for money’. One by one,many engineering industries in India went for ISO certification. Now it is the turnof the service industries, such as banking, education and hospitals, to controlthe variations in their output, and to attract customers through third-party certification of their quality of service. This will provide a competitive edge. A number of hospitals worked hard to obtain the ISO 9002 certification. K. Prabakar in the chapter ‘ISO 9002 Certification for a Hospital—An illustrative Case’, describes what this is all about, explains standard clauses in understandableterms to hospital administrators, and elucidates how Apollo Hospital obtainedthis certification.
This is supported with a case illustration by Dr A.V. Srinivasanin the next chapter.Compiling a book of this nature is quite a strenuous task, and is time-consuming. But I enjoyed it as I realised its value for the readers. The interest and continued support provided by Sangita Reddy and Dr Prathap C. Reddy enthused me in creating this collection. I wish to record my appreciation andthanks to them. Archana Rajgopal, Ishrath Humairah, Kiranmaye Rao, Arundhati Mamidi andDharma Tej, who were students of Apollo Institute of Hospital Administration,helped me a great deal in composing and editing the chapters. Their cheerfulnessand willingness to share my work made the task a pleasure. Finally, Shaik Khasimbi, with her unlimited patience, supported me in this venture withsecretarial assistance.