Clinical departments are not cost management adverse. On the contrary, they will help supply chain professionals to manage their own department or unit’s costs and quality without arm twisting, but they do require solid evidence that a change is necessary when it comes to their major and minor product category overspends. Supply and value analysis managers have been able to keep costs low for many years with various value analysis and contracting strategies but there comes a time when the clinical departments must learn where they need to do better to improve your clinical supply integration for better results. Here are three ways to do it:
How To Improve Your Clinical Supply Integration
1. Have Your Clinical Department Heads Become Value Analysis Team Leaders. One of the most effective tactics that we have employed to obtain buy-in for needed clinical supply changes is to have clinical department heads or managers become value analysis team leaders of their healthcare organization’s clinical VA teams (i.e., surgical, cardiology, diagnostic, etc.). This way, your clinicians can better control their destiny, make the changes that they like, and improve their outcomes.
2. Provide Value Analysis KPIs So Your Clinicians Can Hone In On Their Overspends. All clinical department heads and managers need to know where they stand regarding their supplies and purchased services. This can only happen when your clinical department heads and managers are provided with Value Analysis KPIs that can determine where they need to get better. A recent success was with specialty bed rentals for which a department manager, after reviewing where they stand in their cohort KPI comparables, found that the issue with cost overruns could be solved just by going back to basics and following their policy/procedure for using these beds. The hospital saved 52% and over $110K annually.
3. Train and Coach Your Clinicians To Effectively Manage Their Own Supply Expenses. Just providing value analysis KPIs won’t make the identified savings happen. You will need to train and coach your clinical department heads and managers through your hospital, system, or IDN’s process of implementing their identified supply savings. This is where the supply chain can be most helpful with hands-on assistance if necessary to make the supply savings happens.
As stated previously, supply chain and value analysis practitioners have done a good job of reducing the price at the pump, but to attack your in-use costs you need to provide your clinicians with the structure, insight, training, and coaching to wring the towel dry on your supply savings. It’s a paradigm that will make a difference!
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