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Misplaced Healthcare Equipment Costs Millions

Written by: Kimberly Commito on Monday, February 20, 2017 Posted in: HME/DME

In the last few years, multiple reports have surfaced about millions of dollars in healthcare equipment gone missing from various facilities around the country. For example, in December 2016, the office of the Louisiana Legislative Auditor announced that more than $15 million in hospital equipment, which should have been located in various facilities around the state, was unaccounted for. (1) And in 2015, an investigation revealed that nearly $12 million worth of equipment appeared to be missing from the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center system in California. (2)

Track your inventory in real-time with CareTend!

These are just two of the most extreme examples. There were many other instances with lesser dollar amounts that weren’t quite so newsworthy. In all of these cases, it’s not clear whether the equipment was stolen—although about $50,000 worth was discovered on eBay in one instance (3)—or if it is simply unaccounted for due to poor management and record keeping. Without adequate tracking, there’s just no way to know.

Obviously, a reliable system that can easily manage inventory is a valuable investment, especially for HME/DME suppliers whose rental equipment is delivered and returned on a regular basis. For example, with the barcode technology available in Mediware’s CareTend, inventory can be tracked and monitored in real time. This way, you not only know exactly what you have on hand to fill orders, you can locate every piece of equipment whenever you need it. And hopefully, none of it ever ends up for sale on eBay.



  1. “Millions of Dollars in New Hospital Equipment Missing”;
  2. “Taxpayers Spent over $11 Million on Hospital Equipment That’s Now Missing”;
  3. “Stolen Hospital Equipment Shows Up on eBay”;
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