3. Data-driven collaboration is key to clinician engagement.
When it comes to product standardization and other supply chain initiatives in the OR and other procedural areas, a cost savings story alone without an evidence-based approach is unlikely to earn the support of clinicians.
That’s why a number of AHRMM sessions emphasized best practices for engaging clinicians – and one of the most exciting of those strategies was data-driven collaboration.
For example, RFID and other leading technologies are being used to collect product usage data by clinician, procedure, patient and outcome. Equally as important, cloud-based analytics and dashboards are helping clinicians understand (and buy into!) the reality that product standardization can improve efficiency, driving down the total costs without compromising care.
This kind of data-driven collaboration is proving that the greatest efficiencies can only be gained when supply chain experts and clinicians work together as strategic partners as they work toward the Triple Aim.
4. A greater awareness of the impact that automation (combined with the adoption of standards) can have on our collective ability to unlock supply chain efficiencies and support patient safety.
In an industry where purchase history data is still in widespread use to forecast supply needs and trends, it’s no surprise to see a strengthening call for industry adoption of UDI and GS1 standards. These standards are the only way industry players can work together to develop the end-to-end data visibility that will enable a more efficient, patient-driven supply chain model – one that also supports regulatory and patient care initiatives.
Some presenters encouraged attendees to look at other industries – like retail – to illustrate just how critical the adoption of these standards is to healthcare’s ability to truly leverage the power of information.
These common data standards will improve inventory management, facilitate pricing accuracy and charge capture, while helping reduce inefficiencies related to human error. They can facilitate automated record keeping and reduce errors related to manual entry, while enabling accurate information transfer between and among systems. They’re also critical to helping ensure that expired or recalled products never get to a patient. And in cases when a product is subsequently recalled, these technologies will make it far easier – and faster – to trace it back to the patient.
Never before has the healthcare supply chain been transforming as fast as it is today. An effective healthcare supply chain can be more than a source of savings; we believe it’s a strategic tool for improving operating efficiency, safety and quality of care. It was very encouraging to see that view reinforced at AHRMM 2016, along with the emphasis that we must continue to empower supply chain professionals to collaborate with the hospital C-suite, clinicians and other industry partners to leverage information and emerging technologies to solve some of our industry’s most pressing challenges.