The procedures for buying hospital supplies vary from hospital to hospital. Almost every health institution has its clear-cut procedures for making purchases. For example, a hospital department has to initiate the purchase of a given product that it requires and then commission a buyer to obtain the supplies on its behalf. Good business practices have to be followed in the buying process to determine the most suitable offer.
When buying hospital supplies, purchase order numbers are used when placing orders. Together with a packaging slip, the purchase order number must accompany the incoming orders. Keeping such records upholds transparency and ensures that the right products requested by the hospital departments are received. After the hospital receives the supplies, they are handled by Central Stores and later disbursed to the various departments.
Before the payments are authorized, an invoice that has the purchase order number has to be received first from the supplier. It is only buyers who are allowed to get information about the prices of products from the vendors. Accordingly, the departments should not be involved in obtaining any information about the prices of the products. The buyer should seek clarification on terms that might affect the prices of the products, such as discounts or shipping from the supplier.