2020 was a roller coaster with the peaks and valleys of the pandemic. As you know, the coronavirus affected your hospital, system or IDN’s staffing, schedules, cases, and costs. Now with the distribution of the vaccine nationwide, we should see the pandemic effects lessen in 2021. Yet, along with this stabilization will come four new trends that will directly affect your supply chain in 2021:
1. More Value-Based Care Initiatives: There will be a shift in 2021 to cross-functional teams that align with a patient’s entire care episode, resulting in better understanding of product, service, and technology utilization and the total cost of care. Identifying the best savings opportunities will require a modernization of technologies and better system integration.
2. Adoption of Cloud-Based ERP Enterprise Solutions: Now that most hospitals belong to a healthcare system, their legacy ERP software platform can’t store, process, or consolidate multi-facility data for better decision making in this era of healthcare organization consolidation. Therefore, healthcare organizations will be moving to cloud ERP enterprise solutions for better data-driven decision making.
3. Hospitals and Health Systems with Strong Balance Sheets Will Look for More Merger and Acquisition Opportunities: This is because there could be some bargains or even fire sales available for these well-heeled healthcare organizations. Therefore, supply chain leaders must be prepared for these M&A activities with the latest technology that enables them to acquire and consolidate new supply, processing, and distribution operations in record time.
4. Healthcare Organizations Will Focus on More Collaborative Opportunities: During the pandemic, we have seen healthcare organizations working together to buy, store, and distribute PPE. We see more collaboration in 2021 with suppliers, providers, and regional and national group purchasing organizations, especially stockpiling strategies that share costs to rotate stock and create a supply buffer to avoid future shortages.
One thing is constant in supply chain management; it is always changing. The secret to survival is to anticipate change and to prepare for it. These four predictions for 2021 should give you a template to start planning your own response to these new supply chain challenges that are coming our way in 2021.
Source: Supply & Demand Chain Executive
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