May 17, 2020

Cost Management Within Hospital Supply Chain

Cost Management
Supply Chain
hospital supply chain
3 min
Tips For Managing Hospital Budgets
How To Make Your Hospital Supply Chain Lean And Mean Hospital supply chains can account for up to 50 percent of expenditure, which is why it is absolu...


How To Make Your Hospital Supply Chain Lean And Mean

Hospital supply chains can account for up to 50 percent of expenditure, which is why it is absolutely essential for executives in the c-suite to sit up and take notice. In order to run a successful operation, administrators need to ensure the supply chain is totally efficient.

Healthcare Global Gives Five Top Tips To Optimize Hospital Supply Chains >>>


#1. Involve physicians in supply chain discussions, especially related to physician preference items (PPIs) >>>

According to Healthcare Finance News, PPIs account for an estimated 40 percent of a typical supply budget, however they can also cause tension between administration and physician. Every year, medical device companies introduce new models of high-end, implantable devices such as pacemakers, artificial knees and spinal discs. But while the new model nearly always arrives with a higher price tag, there is often little data to suggest it is a clinical improvement over the incumbent.

One way to address this is through value analysis committees comprised of physicians, materials representatives and administration that evaluate PPI selection. If clinicians want to acquire a new PPI, they have to present evidence-based, clinically sound information suggesting the new device would provide a safer or more effective result to a committee of key decision makers.

By aligning physicians with administrators, supply chain managers and other leaders, and by taking a data-driven approach, health systems can limit the acquisition of new, costlier products to just those where data clearly shows increased value.

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#2. Make sure the entire operation is efficient, including the seemingly ‘insignificant’ costs >>>

For many providers, there are multiple opportunities to reduce costs by addressing so-called 'low-hanging fruit'. This could be as simple as replacing branded items with non-branded ones for example. Other options include ensuring that all care sites within a health system are buying identical products using the same contract. This concept of product standardization can be extended to a regional or national level via participation in a group purchasing organization. While these opportunities may not result in huge savings individually, they do in aggregate, and uncovering them isn’t resource-intensive.

#3. Optimize product utilization for cost effectiveness >>>

Optimizing product utilization can be a complicated process however it can produce big savings. Hospitals use comparative data that allows them to make decisions based on quality and cost, they can also gain an understanding of which products are top performers nationwide.

#4. Don’t underestimate energy efficiency opportunities when it comes to saving money >>>

Energy costs consume up to three percent of a hospital's total operating budget and at least 15 percent of their annual profits, reports suggest. Efficient energy use is an often-overlooked opportunity to reduce cost, increase net profits and contribute to the bottom line and is often as simple as replacing energy inefficient light bulbs.

#5. Remember to address ‘deadstock’

Second to labour costs, supplies are the largest expense for most health systems. Reducing on-hand inventory value and increasing inventory efficiency can present significant savings opportunities.


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May 24, 2021

Schneider Electric's intelligent patient room: need to know

2 min
We take a look at Schneider Electric's new smart patient room. 

Schneider Electric has launched a virtual showcase that features its new "intelligent patient room". What is it exactly? 

Who: Schneider Electric is a multinational that develops energy and automation solutions for many different industries - including hospitality, education, defence, and healthcare. Founded in 1836, today it is a Fortune 500 company, and it currently provides technology to 40% of hospitals around the world, among them Penn Medicine, one of the top hospitals in the US where Schneider's EcoStruxure for Healthcare is deployed, an IoT solution. 

What: Schneider has launched its Innovation Experience Live Healthcare Lab, an immersive experience that takes visitors through a demonstration of a hospital, including the doctor’s office, the operating room, and the intelligent patient room. 

The room features a digital patient footwall - a touchscreen that creates a single reference point for patients, families and healthcare providers, by incorporating care information, entertainment and environmental controls all in one place.  A separate digital patient door display has important information for healthcare staff. 

All Schneider's equipment is low-voltage, and integrated so that the patient room, clinical needs and IT are all seamlessly connected, what Schneider calls a digital “system of systems.”

Why:  Mike Sanders, Customer Projects & Services in Healthcare Innovation at Schneider Electric, explains: “The hospital of the future will need to put the patient experience at the forefront, using innovative and connected systems to provide superior in-hospital care experiences.” 

“With the shift to remote work and business brought forth by the pandemic, we knew that we needed to invest in a new virtual experience that showcases our vision for a truly integrated healthcare experience. We believe our intelligent patient room is the solution that our healthcare partners and customers have been looking for, and we’re excited to offer a way for them to experience it no matter where they are in the world.”

Where: The virtual experience was modelled after the new innovations installed at Penn Medicine in Philadelphia, the first real-world installation of Schneider Electric’s fully integrated intelligent patient room technology. It is currently being hosted at the company’s St. Louis Innovation Hub and Innovation Executive Briefing Center (IEBC) facility.  

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