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IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750




Available online at: Review Article


Usha Pokhariya*and Prashant Mathur1
*Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Division of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Shri Guru Ram Rai
Institute of Technology and Sciences, Shri Guru Ram Rai University, Dehradun, 248001,
Uttarakhand, India
Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Division of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Shri Guru Ram Rai
Institute of Technology and Sciences, Shri Guru Ram Rai University, Dehradun, 248001,
Uttarakhand, India
The pharmacy is one of the most extensively used facility in healthcare where a large amount of money is spent for
purchasing medicinal items. In pharmacies, various drugs are being stored for supporting the therapy of patients.
Due to the variety of pharmaceutical items, it is a difficult task to control and manage the quantity of drug. For a
better and effective service management in a pharmacy, it is required a drug that must be provided continually at
correct time and quantity to sustain steady in supply. This can be accomplished by efficient inventory management
of pharmacy by providing control on important drugs, and deciding on priorities in purchase and distribution.
Therefore, the inventory management is ensures significant improvement for both patient care and optimal use of
resources. Three important methods regarding inventory management practice were studied such as ABC (Always,
Better, Control) analysis, VED (Vital, Essential, Desirable) analysis, and ABC-VED matrix analysis.
Keywords- Drug Inventory Management; Pharmacy; ABC; VED
Corresponding author:
Usha Pokhariya ,Email: QR code
Department of Clinical Pharmacy,
Division of Pharmaceutical Sciences,
Shri Guru Ram Rai Institute of Technology and Sciences,
Shri Guru Ram Rai University, Dehradun, 248001,
Uttarakhand, India
Please cite this article in press Usha Pokhariya*and Prashant Mathur., Review on: Inventory Management, Indo
Am. J. P. Sci, 2018; 05(04). Page 3124

IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750

INTRODUCTION: management and production planning and scheduling

The advent of advanced medical technology is have become evident.[9] World Health Organization
resulted in a disproportionate increase in the suggested that no single individual should have total
expenditure on health care. Therefore, a hospital control of pharmaceutical purchasing and
spends about one-third of its budget on purchasing procurement. A designated is purchasing committee
materials and supplies including medicines.[1] In will review and approve all purchases.[10]
pharmacy, a few areas where a large amount of Inventory
money is spent on buying items and it is one of the Any stock that a firm keeps to meet its future
most extensively used therapeutic facilities of the requirement of production and sales is called
hospital.[2] Hospital supply system should ensure “INVENTORY”. The basic reason for holding
adequate stock of all the required items to maintain inventory is to keep up to the production activities
uninterrupted supply. This evokes. the effective and unhindered. It is neither physically possible nor
efficient inventory management of pharmacy store by economically justifiable to wait for the stock to arrive
keeping a close supervision on important drugs, at the time when they ate actually required.
prevention of pilferage, and priority setting in Therefore, keeping of inventory is necessary for the
purchase and distribution of drugs. A study suggested efficient working of an organization.[11]
that review for expensive drugs could bring out 20% The proper control need in inventory as it is one of
savings in pharmacy store budget. Hence, the the largest assets of an organization. Inventories
essentiality of inventory management is articulate.[3] should be neither excessive nor adequate. If
Inventory is represents an important decision inventories were kept at a high level, higher interest
variable at all stages of product manufacturing, and storage costs would be incurred; on the other
distribution and sales, in addition to being a major hand, a low level of inventories may result in
portion of total current assets of many business. frequent interruption in the production. schedule
Inventory usually represents approximately 40% of resulting in under utilization of capacity and lower
the total capital of industrial organizations. It sales. The main objective of inventory management
comprises 33% of company assets and 90% of is to determine and maintain the optimum level of
working capital. Inventory constitutes a major investment in inventories, which help in achieving
segment of total investment. It is crucial that good the required objective. The Inventory Management is
inventory management be practised to ensure growth control operating costs and provide better
and profitability.[4] The principal goal of inventory understanding.[12]
management is to balance the conflicting economics
of not wanting to hold too much stock.[5] Drug Definition and Concepts
inventory management desire at cost containment and In pharmacy operations, inventory is referred to the
improved efficiency.[6] The inventory management stock of pharmaceutical products confined to meet
is bring out significant improvement not only in the future demand. Inventory represents the largest
optimal use of resources but also in patient care. current asset, as well as liquid asset inpharmacy
Continuous management can provide the value added practice and its value continues to rise because of the
services to the patients.[3] Inventory control is very growth in variety and cost opharmaceutical products.
essential in a developing country like India. India is a Inventory management is defined as the continuing
country of scarce resources and it is the primary “process of planning, organizing and controlling
responsibility of each hospital to ensure optimum inventory” that aims at “minimizing the investment in
utilization of available resources to provide good inventory while balancing supply and demand”.[13]
service or quality patient care.[7] Inventory management refers to all the activities
which is involved in developing and managing the
Historical review of inventory management inventory levels of raw materials, semi-finished
Historically, inventory management is often meant materials (work-in-progress) and finished good so
too much inventory and too little management or too that sufficient supplies are available and the costsof
little inventory and too much management. Inventory over or under stocks are low.[14] The cost of
management is generated .as technological progress maintaining inventory is included in the final price
has increased the organizations abilities to produce paid by the consumer. Good in inventory represents a
goods in greater quantities, faster and with multiple cost to their owner. The manufacturer is the expense
design variations. There can be severe penalties for of materials and labour. The wholesaler also funds
excesses in either direction. The public has tied up.The basic goal of the researchers is to
compounded the problem by its receptiveness to maintain a level of inventory that will provide
variations and frequent design changes.[8] Since in optimum stock at lowest cost.[15]
mid 1980s, the strategic benefits of inventory Page 3125

IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750

Another author accent that inventory management in  Finished Goods:

its expansive perspective is to keep the most Finished goods inventories are those completely
economical amount of one kind of asset in order to manufactured products which are ready for sale.
facilitate an increase in the total valueof all assets of Stock of raw materials and work in progress
the organization – human and material resources.[16] facilitate production. While stock of finished
The chief objective of inventory management and goods is required for smooth marketing
control is to inform managers how much of a good to operation. Thus, inventories serve as a link
re-order, when to re-order the good, how frequently between the production and consumption of
orders should be placed and what the appropriate goods.[22]
safetystock is, for minimizing stock outs. The overall
goal of inventory is to have what is needed, and to Functions of Inventory:
minimize the number of times one is out of stock.[17] 1. To meet anticipated customer demand. These
In future demand, inventory is a stock of goods that is inventories are referred to as anticipation stocks
maintained by a business in apprehension.[18] This because they are held to satisfy planned or
definition is also supported by author who stressed expected demand.
that inventory management is an impact on all 2. To meet production requirements. Firm that
business functions, particularly operations, experience seasonal patterns in demand often
marketing, accounting, and finance. He established build up inventories during off- season to meet
that there are three motives for holding inventories, overly high requirements during certain seasonal
which are transaction, precautionary and speculative periods. Companies that process fresh fruits and
motives. The transaction motive occurs when there is vegetable deal with seasonal inventories.
a need to hold stock to meet production and sales 3. To decouple operations. The buffers permit
requirements.[19] other operations to continue temporarily while
the problem is resolved. Firms have used buffers
Inventory-Associated Costs of raw materials to insulate production from
The four types of costs associated with inventory in disruptions in deliveries from suppliers, and
pharmacy practice: acquisition costs, procurement finished goods inventory to buffer sales
costs, carrying costs, and shortage costs.[20-21] operations from manufacturing disruptions.
Acquisition cost is the net amount of money the 4. To protect against stock-outs. Delayed
pharmacy pays for the products. Procurement costs deliveries and unexpected increases in demand
represent the costs associated with purchasing of the increases the risk of shortages. The risk of
products, which include placing and receiving orders, shortage can be reduced by holding safety
stocking and paying invoices. Carrying costs refer to stocks, which are stocks in excess of anticipated
costs associated with product storage, which also demand.
include costs induce as a result of crisis, e.g. theft or 5. To take advantage of order cycles. Inventory
damage. Shortage costs, is also known as stock-out storage enables a firm to buy and produce in
costs, that are having the costs of not having the economic lot sizes without having to try to match
product on the shelves when needed. purchases or production with demand
requirements in short run.
Types of Inventory 6. To hedge against price increase. The ability to
The three main types of inventories are raw materials, store extra goods also allows a firm to take
work-in-progress, & finished Goods. advantage of price discounts for large orders.
 Raw Materials: 7. To permit operations. Production operations
Raw Materials are those inputs that are converted take a certain amount of time mean that there
into finished product through the manufacturing will generally be some work-in-process
process. Raw material inventories are those units inventory.[23]
which have been purchased and stored for future
productions. Inventory Management Process
Among the essential eight roles of the pharmacist that
 Work-in-Progress: are described by the World Health Organization and
Work-in progress, also called stock-in-progress. the International Pharmaceutical Federation,
These inventories are semi manufactured managing resources (money, material, manpower,
products. They represent products that need more time, and information) is a key factor to professional
work before they become finished products for success on individual level, as well as organizational
sales. level .[24] Page 3126

IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750

Inventory management tools

The tools of inventory control / inventory management are as follows:

Table: 1 Selective inventory control categories and criteria [25]

Sr. No. Category Criteria Application

1. ABC Analysis Annual usage For material which go in to the

value(Consumption rate* production
Price Rs./Piece )
2. XYZ Analysis ( Use for 2-D Closing stock value of A category status eg.
study inventory at the time of A category in X: watch C category
physical stock verification in X: reduce stock level
3. HML (High, Medium, Low) Unit price To keep in check high cost items
4. VED Analysis (Vital, Criticality or Loss of For controlling maintenance for
Essential and Desirable) production spare and manufacturing
5. FSN Analysis (Fast, Slow Issues from store give idea. Fast moving items should be kept
and Non-Moving) Dispose non-moving in high level
6. SDE Analysis (Scars, Procurement difficulties To keep vigil on availability,
Difficult and Easily (Source of Procurement) should be kept in stock keeping in
available) mind difficulty in procurement and
may follow forward buying
7. GOLF Analysis (Govt., Govt.- Lead time more for Government supplies need patience
Ordinary, Local and Foreign retrieval, advance payment to get material; canalizing agency
) Foreign- Procedure long can be used, foreign procurement
through bank, port , lead time factor counts.
permission, duty etc.
8. SOS Analysis (Seasonal and Soya bean, farm produce, Should buy in harvest season to get
Off- Seasonal) high off season price, low in price advantage and good quality
harvest season. supply. Page 3127

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ABC Analysis VED Analysis

ABC (Always, Better, Control) analysis is a VED analysis is based on priority and importance to
significant and well-known analytical tool in patients. health.[28] It divides the items into three
inventory management.[26] It was first developed in categories as Vital (V), Essential (E) and Desirable
the 1950s and aims to gain managers interest on the (D). V class drugs are life-saving like vaccines, and it
critical few (A-items) and not on the insignificant is needed for life support (e.g., some antibiotics,
many (C-items). It divides items into three classes as serums, insulins, digoxin etc.) It must be available in
A, B and C. It can be managed and controlled the pharmacy stocks at all times. E class drugs, is
separately. A-items constitute only 10% of all lower severity, are efficient for therapy of less life
inventory items. They have to be under strict control threatening, but still serious diseases (e.g. antibiotics,
of higher management. as they consume the top 70%- ranitidine, chloroquine, phenytoin and etc.) It may be
80% of the total inventory consumption value of the available in the pharmacy stocks. The remaining
company. B-itemsis the interclass items which drugs with lowest severity, which is used for therapy
include 20% of total inventory items. They require to of slight diseases, it is included in D class drugs. The
moderate control by middle management since they absence of these drugs is notnoxiousto the health of
consume 20% of annual consumption value, on the the patients e.g., Vitamin E capsules, sun screen
contrary,.C-items isneeded control by lower lotions.[6]
management, account for 70% of total inventory
items and consume 10% of the annual consumption ABC-VED Matrix Analysis
value. The main restriction of ABC analysis is that it Effective and efficient inventory control can be
depends upon price and the percentage of usage of practiced on the items by considering both VED
the products. The importance of items cannot be analysis and ABC analysis. Table 2, ABC-VED
considered entirely. It is not enough for inventory inventory matrix analysis is created, by combining
management since an item which has low capital the ABC and VED analysis. By cross-tabulating of
investment and consumption may be staminal or life- these analysis nine different subcategories (AV, AE,
saving. The criticality (vitality) of an item is also be AD, BV, BE, BD, CV, CE, and CD) are
considered for development of management tool for obtained.[29] ABC-VED matrix provides more
inventory control. The limitation of ABC analysis is meaningful control over the material supplies and
based only on monetary value and the rate of divides items into three main categories: Category I,
consumption of the item. In a hospital, an item of low Category II, and Category III. Category I items
monetary value and consumption may be very vital includes vital and expensive. It is consist of six
or even life saving. Their importance cannot be subcategories (AV, BV, CV, AE, and AD).And it is
overlooked simply because they do not appear in need control by top of management. Category II
category A. Therefore, another parameter of the includes essential with low cost items (BE, CE, BD).
materials is their criticality.[27] Category III consists of the desirable with least cost
items (CD).

Table 2.ABC-VED inventory decision matrix[29]

Criticality of item

ABC-VED Matrix High Low

High A Continuous High Low Order Continuous Low Low
Consumption Review Safety Quantity Review Safety Order
Value Stock Stock Quantity
C Periodic High High Order Periodic Low High
Review Safety Quantity Review Safety Order
Stock Stock Quantity Page 3128

IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750

Among various inventory control model ,Economic inventory reaches zero. A fixed cost is charged for
order quantity (EOQ) has been commonly used, each order placed, regardless of the numberof units
which attempts to the balance the carrying cost with ordered. EOQ along with ABC-VED analysis is
the cost of running out of the items.[30] It is the level proposed to be the most effective and efficient model
of inventory that minimizes total inventory holding for inventory control.[31] Most of the savings with
costs and ordering costs. EOQ only applies when the ABC-EOQ is reported with the low valueitems (B
demand for a product is constant over the year. and and C items) which were being purchased too
each new order is delivered in total when the frequently.[32]

Representation of EOQ: EOQ can be determined with the help of the following formula :
E.O.Q. =

Where, Oc= Cost Of Order, D = Annual Demand, Hc= Holding Cost/Carrying Cost [in Rs. or Unit]

Figure 2: EOQ Model Cost Curves[33]

Factors affecting inventory management pharmacists should hire credible and candid
The following factors is taken in account when employee, proper security and observation training
evaluating pharmacy inventory management:product and monitoring strategies are also important. In
type (generic, brand), inventory size, unclaimed addition, relevant security regarding controlled
prescriptions, inventory shrinkage,returned product substances should be a priority in monitoring
policies and use of formularies.[13] Generic products shrinkage, especially when theft of these substances
consist lower acquition costs compared to bran- is ever more challenging. In hospital pharmacies,
named counterparts,thereby minimize inventory formularies are utilized to enhance inventory
costs. Most product vendors (manufacturers and management, where pharmacists can carry one
wholesalers) have policies regarding products it may therapeutic equivalent product within a class of
be returned. Examples of such policies include medications; thereby reducing overall inventory cost.
providing credits for future orders, product However, limited lists and formularies could serve as
replacement and cash back to the pharmacy. About an impediment in balancing supply and demand in
1.5% of all prescriptions filled by community community pharmacy settings.[35]
pharmacies remain unclaimed. Pharmacists should
monitor such prescriptions and specify a threshold The Role of Information Technology in
time period (e.g. 2 weeks) for returning the product InventoryManagement
tothe shelves.[34] Up to 4.5% of community The value of information technology can be
pharmacy sales is lost due to inventory shrinkage. recognized inpharmacy inventory management,
Inventory shrinkagereferred to losses due to theft,. where computerized systems are broadly available in
shoplifting, and robbery. Unfortunately, employee virtually all pharmacy practice settings in
theft comprisesthe largest source for inventory industrialized countries. Technology makes the
shrinkage incommunity pharmacy settings. While methods of inventory management. and methods of Page 3129

IAJPS 2018, 05 (04), 3124-3131 Usha Pokhariya and Prashant Mathur ISSN 2349-7750

evaluating inventory management more efficient, teaching, research and referral healthcare
more precise, and moreaccurate. Examples of the role institute of India. Journal of young pharmacists.
of technology in inventorymanagement include 2010;2(2):201-5.
utilizing hand-held scanning devices forperiodic 3. Mahatme MS, Hiware SK, Shinde AT, Salve
inventory control by scanning the barcodes on AM, Dakhale GN. Medical store management:
theproduct packaging or shelf labels, submitting An integrated economic analysis of a Tertiary
purchasing orders electronically after in putting the Care Hospital in Central India. Journal of Young
scanned information into a computer via a web-based Pharmacists. 2012;4(2):114-8.
system, e.g. e-procurement. Nowadays, technology is 4. Temeng VA, Eshun PA, Essey PR. Application
utilized in almost all pharmacy operations, from of inventory management principles to explosive
ordering, procurement, storage, to paying for products manufacturing and supply–A case
products. Pharmacists should employ the benefit of study. International research journal of finance
newer technologies in their practice for better and economics. 2010;38:198-209.
management. of their pharmacy inventory. An 5. Adeyemi SL, Salami AO. Inventory
example of newer technology toimprove product management: A tool of optimizing resources in a
distribution from manufacturers towholesalers to manufacturing industry a case study of coca-cola
pharmacies is the use of radiofrequencyidentification bottling company, Ilorin Plant. Journal of social
(RFID) microchips, or “tag”.[36] Such tags is science. 2010;23(2):135-42.
intended to store information about the 6. Thawani V, Turankar A, Sontakke S,
pharmaceutical product from the manufacturing date Pimpalkhute S, Dakhale G, Jaiswal K, Gharpure
until arriving to and removing from the storage K, Dharmadhikari S. Economic analysis of drug
shelves in pharmacies. Automation in pharmacy expenditure in Government Medical College
inventory management creates additional time for hospital, Nagpur. Indian journal of
pharmacists to provide pharmaceutical care and other pharmacology. 2004;36(1):15.
pharmaceutical services to patients and 7. Doshi R, Patel N, Jani N, Basu M, Mathew S.
customers.[37] Undoubtedly, information technology ABC and VED analyses of drug management in
can beemployed in pharmacy operations to improve a government tertiary care hospital in Kerala.
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Purchasing and inventory management by
CONCLUSION: pharmacist of a private hospital in Northeast of
After reviewing several articles it was seen that Thailand. International journal of pharmacy and
inventory analysis plays important role in the pharmaceutical sciences. 2014;6(5):401-5.
management of pharmacies. In this review, we have 11. Deveshwar A, Modi D. Inventory Management
conveyed concern the usage of inventory control Delivering Profits through Stock Management.
techniques in the healthcare provides significant In6th International Business & Social Science
improvement in patient care, customer relationships Research Conference 2013.
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