Tag ArchivePocket PC


Managing Bulk Loans with the Pocket-PC

(For an explanation of loan delivery using the Pocket-PC look here). This article concentrates on the bulk issue of devices. Suppose for example that: Theatres request 10 T34 Syringe Drivers

It would be time-consuming to have to enter 10 individual loan delivery list items. Instead, clicking the Add Batch button on the Items tab of the Loan Delivery List property page will simplify this.


This automatically creates the following delivery list items:


The devices may be “picked” using the Pocket-PC as with any other loan and delivered in the same way.

It can also be useful to use this technique when issuing multiple devices to a single patient – just leave the model field empty and update the list manually after the batch has been added.


This adds the following items:



Managing Loans with the Pocket-PC

After a recent meeting of the Pocket-PC SIG (Special Interest Group) the process of issuing and collecting devices has been streamlined in an effort to reduce (or eliminate) paperwork. This post will deal with issuing loans. Device collection has not changed but I will post an article explaining that process shortly. Also, to stop this article from being overly long I will publish an article describing batch deliveries very soon (probably today).

In retail environments there is a separation between what is known as “picking” and delivery. Picking is the act of choosing the items to be delivered. The Pocket-PC Loan Manager application now supports both picking and delivery. When you order your groceries on-line the person who picks the items to satisfy your order is not necessarily the same person who delivers them.

The Loan Delivery List is at the heart of the Pocket-PC mechanism for issuing loans. A small library might create a single delivery list per day while larger libraries may create 1 per site, or 1 for each member of staff. The example below assumes that a small, single-site library is using a single daily delivery list.

1. Create the delivery list

This can be done daily and the list can be kept open all day with requests being added as they are received.


2. A request from a ward is received

Janet Smith has requested a T34 Syringe Driver Driver and an Argus 708 Volumetric Pump for patient John Smith in Bay C in Holly Ward. The request is logged by Zara Page, who will be delivering the devices immediately.

Aside: Some libraries do nor record patient names, just Patient No’s. In e-Quip the Requested For field is used for both, so whether your enter John Smith or 1234567 is up to you. You also have the option of recording patients using an e-Quip patient records. This tends to be done by community libraries where patient addresses are required.

a). These requests are added to the Items tab


The fields completed are:

Request Date (Ctrl+H will enter the current date & time)
Requested By
Model (mandatory)
Location (mandatory)
Requested For
Delivered By

b). The librarian then clicks the Synch to Pocket-PC button


The delivery list is saved and the following screen is displayed. This allows the user to specify a) the location of the mobile database file which will be copied to the Pocket-PC and b) the loan requests which will be copied. Note that the default is to copy only requests linked to the currently logged-in user (i.e. Zara Page)


3. The librarian then takes the Pocket-PC to the library to select (i.e. Pick) the devices

When the Loan Manager application is first run the user must select his or her name from the first screen:


All outstanding loan requests are then displayed.


The librarian must then pick individual devices for each request. To do this he simply:

a. Taps on the request

b. Scans (or types) the Equipment No (Note that a GS1 bar code can be scanned)

c. Taps Save & Close


This is repeated for each device.

4. The librarian then takes the devices to Holly Ward

Suppose that Zara hands the devices to Sarah Brown, the Ward Clerk. To deliver both devices all that is necessary is to tap any one of the open requests.

Note: tapping a loan request which has no Equipment No opens the “picking” screen while tapping a loan request with an Equipment No opens the delivery screen. The 1st tab shows the location & patient details.

a. To deliver the device(s), tap on the Delivery tab


b. Enter Sarah Brown in the Accepted By field

c. Click Sign


d. Click Accept. This closes the signature screen and sets the delivery date & time field

e. Click Deliver All – this will deliver all requests for this Location, Bed & Patient

5. The librarian returns to the library

(After possibly continuing to other locations to deliver more devices). Before returning to the library the librarian may collect devices which are no longer required. The collection process will be described in a future article.

On returning to the library the Pocket-PC can be cradled and the loan information updated. This is done using the Sync Loans from Pocket-PC application. The loan below shows one of the 2 loans delivered by Zara Page using the Pocket-PC.


The synchronisation process also updates the delivery list to show that loans have been created.



The Pocket PC Loan Auditor

If you’re involved with an equipment library then you’ll know that stuff moves. You might loan something to Fred in Ward 1 and it might pretty soon end up with Doris in Ward 2. The obvious (although very expensive) solution is to use RFID to track your library devices. For example, if you are fortunate enough to have the Harland Simon Discovery RFID system then as soon as the kit is detected in Ward 2 the loan for Ward 1 is closed and a new loan is created for the same device in Ward 2. How can you achieve the same thing without RFID?

Library staff commonly patrol the wards delivering equipment which has been requested and picking up items which are no longer required. There is, byt hye way, a handy Pocket PC tool for e-Quip called the Loan Manager which greatly simplifies this. In some hospitals, while the library staff are in a ward they go to each bed and record the library devices that they find there. When they get back to the library they update existing loans and create new ones depending on what they found. Clearly this involves a lot of work. The Loan Auditor aims to automate this process.

Step 1:

On entering a ward the librarian selects the location and (optionally) his name. He then clicks “Audit Location …


Step 2:

He optionally enters a patient name/number and a bed/bay number, then scans the barcode of each device he finds. The process is simple and fast:

a. Scan the barcode

b. Click “Audit This Device

c. Repeat for all devices


Step 3:

a. Go to the next bed

b. Optionally enter the patient & bed details

c. Scan each device, as in Step 2

Step 4:

When you leave the ward simply click on “Done

If you make a mistake you can edit the audit record at any time by tapping on it.



The “Sync Loans from Pocket PC” has been updated so that it can process audit records in addition to deliveries and collections.

This is what happens:

1. The device is not currently on loan

A new loan is created for the device using all of the information from the audit.

2. The device is currently on loan to the same location

The loan is updated with the patient & bed/bay information and the Audit Date & Audited By fields are updated

3. The device is currently on loan to a different location

a. The current loan is closed. The loan end date is set to be the Audit Date

b. A new loan is created for the device using all of the information from the audit.

All pretty straightforward, but this could save an enormous amount of time, improve your device utilisation data and also keep you equipment location information more up-to-date.