Hybrent Blog

Healthcare Supply Chain: Reduce Supply Costs

    Posted on October 9, 2018


    Reduce Supply Costs


    Continuing our celebration of National Healthcare Supply Chain Week, we are breaking down supply chain management to help your team bring back the focus to what matters most: patient care.

    Previously, we covered a high-level overview of supply chain in healthcare. If you missed reading, you can find the article here.

    Throughout the week, we are covering a few benefits that come with a strategic supply chain process including reduced supply costs, increased efficiencies, and high quality patient care.


    Supply Costs

    According to Becker’s ASC Review, supply costs can consume 17-25% of an ASC’s net revenue.

    Some of the most common activities that result in high supply costs include:

    • Non-standard ordering methods
    • Clinician hoarding
    • Overstock

    Whether you’re a surgery center, physician office, or long-term care facility, you likely have experienced at least one of these activities within your organization. Unfortunately, if it has happened once the chances that you will experience the same problems are high.

    The good news is that a supply chain software designed for healthcare can eliminate the chance of these expensive activities reoccurring. Supply chain software provides a vast majority of benefits and services to help your facility save time and money.


    Standardize Supply Orders

    There are a variety of ways to begin reducing overall supply costs.

    The first step to control and lower these costs is consolidating vendors and products.

    Consolidating vendors and products is a great way to begin your process to reduce costs. Work with your coworkers, organization, and vendor reps to find a vendor that aligns with your organization goals and can offer you a strategic prime vendor deal.

    Another way to consolidate vendors and products is to use a supply chain software that enables you to shop and order from all your vendors in a single online portal. The ability to shop and order in one convenient platform not only saves you time, but also allows you to price compare products from different vendors.

    If your organization has both a prime vendor and supply chain software, you have the opportunity to monitor spend and compliance with your vendor contract. Supply chain software uses data tied to inventory and spend with real-time reporting.

    Supply chain software allows identifies price discrepancies. The software will alert you if you were invoiced for an amount different from what you ordered or contracted at.


    Increase Communication and Transparency

    Supply chain software can help increase communication and transparency at your facility. Both are important in the process of aligning your team to make actionable steps towards achieving optimal supply chain management, eliminating overstock, and clinical hoarding.

    Overstocking supplies is expensive, takes up space, and often results in unused expired products.

    Avoid overstock using par levels. Supply chain software makes it easy to set up min/max/par levels ensuring that your products will always be available for use without overstocking.

    While overstocking is expensive, so is being out of stock of supplies. When a facility struggles with running out of supplies, often clinician hoarding occurs.

    In addition to setting up par levels that are tied to data for accurate optimal supply levels, using barcoding can help save your facility time and money.

    Barcode scanning is an industry best practice and your facility should take advantage of this technology. Barcoding automates product depletion and ordering through your supply chain software.


    Utilize Actionable Data

    One of the biggest benefits of a supply chain software is the ability to access data tied to your facility supply use and spend.

    If your healthcare organization has multiple locations, data will provide insight into your entire organization supply spend. Since the data is tied directly to your inventory usage, you have the ability to track costs and use reports to identify areas of cost savings.

    Most supply chain software provides the opportunity to use preference cards or, if you already use a practice management software (PMS) that hosts your preference cards, the ability to integrate. Using preference cards for case costing provides the information you need to impact the bottom line.


    Check back tomorrow for the next installment of Hybent’s National Healthcare Supply Chain Week on how to increase efficiencies using supply chain software!


    Healthcare Supply Chain: An Overview Healthcare Supply Chain: Increase Efficiencies

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