Browsing Management and Law by Author "Zheng, D."
An exploratory study of reverse exchange systems used for medical devices in the UK National Health Service (NHS)Xie, Y.; Breen, Liz; Cherrett, T.; Zheng, D.; Allen, C.J.Purpose This study aims to provide insights into the scale and use of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in managing medical devices in the NHS, with a focus on Reverse Exchange (RE) systems, as part of the broader Reverse Logistics (RL) systems, within which medical devices are returned and exchanged. Design/Methodology/Approach Two case studies were conducted with NHS Hospital Trusts, while another was built upon secondary resources. Primary findings were triangulated with information collected from the NHS Trusts’ reports, direct observation and a preliminary round of consultations with 12 healthcare professionals working in other NHS Trusts or Integrated Equipment Community Services. Findings The findings suggest that the sophistication of ICT implementation increases with the risks and value associated with medical devices. Operational attributes are derived from ICT implementations which can positively impact on RE performance. The forces that drive the adoption of ICT in the NHS include pressure from government, business partners and patients, competitive pressure, perceived benefits, organisation size, top management support and the availability of sufficient resources. Obstacles are mainly centred around the lack of sufficient resource. Research limitations/implications Although the Trusts that participated in this research are representative of different regions, the generalisation of the study results may be limited by the size of the sample organisations, so the results can only provide insights into the research problem. As this work is exploratory in nature, there is insufficient data on which to form definitive recommendations. Practical implications NHS Trusts may use the 6 operational attributes identified and verified by the case studies to benchmark their ICT implementation for device management. The actual and potential benefits of ICT implementation could inform technology development and encourage the uptake of ICT in healthcare. Governmental bodies can utilise this information to develop directives to actively drive ICT adoption in device management and the associated RE system. A well-considered training programme is needed to improve staff ICT skills in order to fully realise the potential of ICT systems which support the effective RE of medical devices. Originality/value The results suggest that ICT supported reverse exchange of medical devices backs up the supply chain reduces capital costs and medical risks and, facilitates the redeployment of funds to frontline medical treatment.