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What are the Different Types of Hospital Supplies?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 30 August 2016
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In order to ensure that patients get the proper care, doctors and nurses must use a wide variety of hospital supplies to examine, diagnose, and treat disease and injury. These supplies are varied is use and design, but all have one common factor: they help patients to get well. For this reason, orderlies and other attendants must be sure that all supplies are adequately stocked at all times.

One of the most well-known kinds of hospital supplies are bandaging and other injury treatments. Gauze, bandages, and splints are all kept on hand to treat cuts, sprains, and breaks. These are generally stocked in the highest quantities in the emergency room, and are used to absorb blood and prevent further bleeding, keep muscles still to ensure no further damage is done to a sprain, and to set broken bones to allow them to heal.

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Other common hospital supplies are sheets and gowns, which are used by patients to ensure sanitary conditions. Although many people complain about the paper gowns hospitals generally require patients to wear, they are used for a very important purpose. Paper gowns are disposable, meaning that only one patient will use it before it is thrown out. Even cloth gowns serve a purpose, as they allow for easy access when the doctor must perform procedures or exams on the lower extremities or torso area. Sheets are used to be sure no patient sits directly on a table or ER bed, thus preventing the spread of germs.

Another type of hospital supplies further prevent the spread of infections or disease. Gloves are worn by all hospital personnel when dealing with each patient to ensure that germs lurking on hands do not make it to the patient. Most are made from latex, but for some who are allergic, other materials are available. Surgical masks are also kept in supply for not only surgeons but for any doctor dealing with a potential infectious illness.

Additional hospital supplies include medications that are used regularly in the hospital pharmacy, as well as tongue compressors, paper cups, plastic cups for collecting samples of urine, blood vials, and needles. Each needle and vial must be replaced with a new one after each patient has been attended to in order to prevent the spread of hepatitis, HIV and other diseases.

The stocking of proper hospital supplies is not only convenient for doctors while they are caring for sick patients, although this is important, but it ensures the safety of each person who passes through. Replacing supplies with new ones each time and having adequate numbers of commonly used supplies on hand ensures that each patient is cared for promptly, safely and with as little hassle possible.

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Euroxati
Post 4

Though there are many types of hospital supplies that are beneficial, I think that gauzes, bandages and splints are some of the most useful. It's not just because you can find them at a hospital, but even more so, they can be bought in a store as well. In other words, the fact that even hospitals have them shows their significance. This is especially considering how we don't give it much thought till we get injured.

Viranty
Post 3

In relation to the second to last paragraph, I like how it's mentioned that needles always need to be replaced after they're cleaned, in order to prevent infections. In fact, did you know that many years ago, needles weren't even disposed properly? Instead of being "recycled" so to speak, they were put in the trash cans with everything else. Because of this, when the janitors would clean up at night, some of them would end up getting injured and pierced by the needles. And to think that this is only one of the few examples of why hospital supplies can be so dangerous.

Chmander
Post 2

Without a doubt, when someone is working in a hospital, they definitely have to be aware of the equipment that needs to be used. After all, there is so much variety, and what works for one patient might not work for another. As an example, let's say that you're trying to clean someone's arm in preparation for giving them a shot. Maybe one cleaning substance would work for someone, but not for the other person. This is just one of the few examples of hospital supplies in the workplace.

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