Your guide: How to order medical equipment and supplies for your patients

Did you know that there is a specific process for ordering medical equipment and supplies—like compression wear, breast feeding supplies, orthopedic braces, among others—for your patients?

With the opening of the new UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store, the process for ordering these supplies has changed.

How this process impacts you

If you frequently prescribe or order medical equipment for your patients, learning this new process is easy.

  1. Document the medical need for the supply during your patient visit.
  2. Create a durable medical equipment (DME) supply order through EPIC.
  3. Print a copy of the order for your patient.
  4. Direct your patient to the Medical Supply Store to pick up their item.
Documentation is a vehicle that communicates who, what, when, where, why, and how, to other patient care givers. Proper documentation ensures that the patients get items/services that are reasonable and necessary, supports proper claim payment, and supports favorable medical review decisions and in turn reduces administrative cost that are associated with appeals.

DME consignment closets will still be available throughout our hospitals and clinics in addition to the opening of this dedicated medical supply store. Specific process established in those consignment locations will not change.

If your patient would rather use an outside vendor for medical equipment and supplies, the same easy process applies.

  1. Document the medical need for the supply during your patient visit.
  2. Create a durable medical equipment (DME) supply order through EPIC.
  3. Print a copy for the patient to take to the supplier of their choice.*
*A fax copy to the supplier might be requested for ease of the referral.

It’s important that you document your orders for these medical supplies and equipment because proper documentation is the primary communication tool for promoting quality patient care.

Questions?

Answers to frequently asked questions about this process can be found below. Not finding what your looking for? Email Anna Gamboa at annalie-gamboa@uiowa.edu for additional information on the new process, insurance or Medicare criteria, or recommendations for internal process improvements.

Where is the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store located?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:17 pm

The new UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store has opened for your medical supply and work-related product needs, located conveniently near the main entrance of the hospital.

Do staff receive a discount at the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:17 pm

Yes, UI Health Care employees enjoy a 20% discount on any items not billed through insurance.

How do I order equipment or supplies for my patients to the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:17 pm
  1. Document the medical need for the supply during your patient visit.
  2. Create a durable medical equipment (DME) supply order through EPIC.
  3. Print a copy of the order for your patient.
  4. Direct your patient to the Medical Supply Store to pick up their item.
Are my patients required to use the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:17 pm

No. While UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store is conveniently located within UI Hospitals & Clinics, patients are not required to use this vendor, and may choose an outside store or supplier for their medical supply needs.

Are there promotional/educational UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store materials to share with my patients?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:18 pm

Yes. You can download this flyer to share with patients for more information about the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store.

Does the current referral process change when ordering enteral, oxygen, and other medical equipment and supply change?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:18 pm

No. Continue with the current process of calling the number for UI Community Homecare or the patient’s preferred supplier for their equipment needs. UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store can also assist with the referral. 

Does UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store deliver to the patient’s room?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:18 pm

At this time, we do not deliver to patient’s rooms. This is a service we plan on implementing at a later date.

Can the patient go to UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store without a doctor's order?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:18 pm

Yes, however if the patient is requesting to submit billable supplies to their insurance, an order is required.

Does UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store directly ship supplies to patient homes?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:19 pm

Yes. Most supplies such as ostomy, trach supplies, urological, and compression stockings can be directly shipped to the patient’s home.

Does UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store process all insurances?
Updated on 06/24/2021 at 2:21 pm

No. UI Home Solutions currently are not in-network with insurances listed:

  • United HealthCare
    • John Deere Premier
    • VA Community Care
  • Tricare
  • Medicaid of any other State besides Iowa
  • Medicaid MCOs of any State besides Iowa
  • Federal VA Benefit Insurances
  • First Health Network
  • Medical Associates HMO

Call the UI Home Solutions-Medical Supply Store at 319-284-5151 for verification of insurance.