The healthcare supply chain is an interwoven web of vendors, suppliers, and providers. Medical disposables are a growing segment of the supply chain projected to reach $200 billion this year with global demand estimated to grow by 6.4% annually over the next four years.* The increased demand inside an industry full of reform, policy changes, and widespread consolidation creates many challenges.

Cost Savings
Reducing costs is the top priority for supply chain professionals.  Finding savings while juggling more products, increased demand, and a variety of supply chain partners is a daunting but vital task. The savings are needed to reinvest in programs to reduce error rates, avoid re-admittance, and create better patient care.

Continuum of Care Integration
The industry consolidation impacts all components of the supply chain. The integration of hospitals, vendors, ACOs, physician practices all add complexity to the supply chain. This increases the type of products and volume of items that buyers have to effectively managed for all these various providers.

Data Dilemma
Accurate item data, quality scores, costs, and reliable measurement metrics are requirement to successfully manage the needs of this increasing multifaceted supply chain while striving to drive savings and improve efficiency.

The Solutions
Supply chain professionals are overcoming these challenges.  They are joining GPO’s, buying groups, and purchasing collabratives to increase purchasing power and access discounted pricing. Providers are seeking value chain partnerships that consolidate suppliers and bring value beyond cost savings. IT management and analytic data investments improve transparency and provide accurate data. These efforts create measurable impacts which ultimately drive better patient care.

Challenges lead to opportunity. Seek value driven partnerships that help reduce cost and drive savings through the supply chain.  Create new solutions that transform these challenges into future success.

*Figures provided by the RnR Market Research study entitled “World Disposable Medical Supplies to 2016”