Healthcare providers are challenged today with their patient population moving outside the walls of the hospital. Treating patients across the continuum includes the ability to serve them in physician offices, surgery centers, acute settings, long term care and in the patient’s home. A recent Ernst & Young survey of 700 qualified healthcare professionals identified the escalating cost of care delivery, driven by system inefficiencies as one of their top challenges. A supply chain strategy across the continuum of care increasingly is the key driver of success for supply chain executives juggling multiple care point responsibilities.
Without a cohesive supply chain solution or process, providers can spend a significant amount of time managing multiple vendors for each healthcare care point in the continuum. Operational inefficiency and stress are frequent outcomes of these scenarios.
When one distribution partner manages the provider’s supply chain, the result is higher service levels and a framework to advance the supply chain. The distribution partner should document the existing logistical requirements at every facility across the care continuum for a seamless implementation and develop a roadmap for operational system-wide improvements. Once the distribution partner details where product is going from beginning to end, the provider and its distribution partner can work through ways to address gaps and improve processes.
Leverage Data from Distribution Partner:
When working collaboratively with a comprehensive supply chain partner that can manage all care points, providers should use data to enable fewer purchase orders and the ability to store and standardize goods across the continuum of care. For example, the exam gloves used in the acute care setting can be standardized into physician office, ASC’s, long-term care and even in the patient’s home, resulting in patients receiving similar care at each of the provider’s facilities.
Providers should be able to use their data to identify what is and isn’t working across all care points, enabling providers to reach their ultimate goal, improved clinical outcomes with methodical, data-driven standardization.
For more information about Medline’s supply chain capabilities and solutions, click here.