Medical Supply Storage Guidelines for Healthcare Facilities Management

/ By DSI Marketing TeamNovember 7, 2022

If you are running a healthcare facility, then you know that medical supply storage is a major aspect of that. All the medical supplies that your facility will be using must be stored properly. 

Medications particularly require special handling so they don't get ruined during storage. This article will discuss medical storage guidelines and how you can implement them within your facility.

Why Having Proper Medical Supply Storage Is Important

Before we discuss the guidelines, we need to go through the reasons why proper medical storage is important.

First of all, medicines, whether prescribed or not, must be kept in the right environment so they won't be spoiled.  They must be kept safe from high temperatures and too much moisture. They should also be kept secure so they are out of reach of children or even pets.

Some drugs can also be abused and it's important to keep them secure and stored properly. Aside from storing the medicines correctly, proper labeling must also be done. The same is true for other medical supplies. They can get ruined by improper handling and storage.

Medical equipment also requires proper storage to prevent damage and facilitate maintenance. The majority of medical equipment has complicated components and controls.

Guidelines for Storage of Medical Supplies

It is time to discuss the medical supply storage guidelines that you can follow. We will go through each type of medical supply and discuss the proper way of handling them.

Non-Regulated Medical Products

Vitamins, supplements, and many health and beauty products are not as heavily regulated as other types of medical products. Drugs and sterile medical products require special certifications for handling and storage.

However, there are some items that are under United States Food and Drug Administration  (FDA) regulations and so you need to know how to properly store them.

FDA-Regulated Products

The FDA has some supervision over health and medical institutions like hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, medical associations, and other similar organizations, this is because they produce items that can fall under the classification of drugs. Moreover, they might also handle some controlled substances.

The FDA has some strict regulations regarding the handling of drugs and medications. Those regulations might involve the temperature of the storage area.

They are also quite strict when it comes to keeping track of the dates and the expiration of the drugs, regardless of whether those are prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) drugs.

Medical Devices

The FDA has given a definition of what can be classified as medical devices. Any device that was designed or made for the diagnosis and treatment of human disease is classified as a medical device.

Medical devices are also defined as those that can be used to modify the physiological process and even the anatomy of a person. Given such a definition, that means that something as simple as an adhesive bandage can be classified as a medical device.

You should be aware that medical devices are grouped into three classes:

  1. Class I medical devices are the ones that do not pose danger to people even if they are mishandled. This is why these medical devices have the least amount of regulation or restrictions. Examples of devices under Class I are tongue depressors and gloves.
  2. Devices that fall under Class II must comply with what's known as Special Controls. Those controls include standards for labeling, tracking, and even guidelines for design. Masks and powered wheelchairs are examples of devices under this category.
  3. Items that fall under Class III are highly regularized and controlled because they present the most danger if they are mishandled. Life-sustaining devices like implants fall under this category.

Many manufacturers of medical devices demand that their vendors and suppliers be ISO 13485 Certified. This certification proves that the vendor has excellent risk management processes in place.


There are several regulating bodies when it comes to pharmaceutical products. The main aim of these regulations is to ensure the safety of the people who will be using the medications. They also aim to reduce drug abuse and fraud.

On top of the manufacturing of pharmaceutical products, the bodies also regulate the storage.

Warehouse Preparedness

Storing medical devices and pharmaceutical products can be complicated. These usually require special facilities and warehouses. Here are some of the basic requirements that must be met by medical warehouses:

  • Warehouses that are meant to handle medical devices and pharmaceutical products must be clean and regularly maintained. It should undergo regular cleaning to avoid pest infestation.
  • It's no secret that some drugs are very much in demand by those who want to abuse them. This is why warehouses and medical storage facilities must have robust security to prevent theft and break-ins.  This is easier to achieve now with security cameras that can be installed throughout the facility.
  • Facilities that store some pharmaceutical products should be climate-controlled. On top of that, they should have adequate backup power so that climate control will not go out completely if the main power is compromised. Remember that even a slight increase in temperature can damage some medications.
  • Facilities that handle certain medical supplies must have a system of tracking the expiration dates of the items that they have. This is to ensure that no drugs or medical products will expire without being used. 

These are some of the guidelines that must be met by warehouses that will be handling medicines and medical devices. As you can see, these are very strict.

The majority of medications can be stored at room temperature. Some will require refrigeration and still others must be frozen. Liquid medications that do not contain preservatives will have to be refrigerated.

It's important that the temperature within the fridge should be maintained at a constant level when storing these types of medications.

Choose Distribution Systems International for Your Storage of Medical Products

We have high-level solutions for every phase of your business, whether you're searching for a new way to keep your medical supplies or just some advice on how to make sure they're secure and easily accessible.

To learn more about our high-quality medical supply storage, you can speak with our team right now. We have representatives in every state, and we'd be happy to assist you in locating the ideal storage option.

Contact us at 800-393-6090 at Distribution Systems International today!

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