Go Time: The last critical steps implementing a value based, VAT-led global sourcing program

June 13, 2017
Five part series:

How Value Analysis Teams (VAT) can improve overall quality, reduce costs and positively impact patient experience by engaging in global sourcing. /

Part  Four – Go Time: The last critical steps implementing a value based, VAT-led global sourcing program

Having successfully achieved organizational strategy acceptance for your hospital’s global sourcing program [Part Three], your hard work is about to pay off. The following are the final steps needed to launch the program that will deliver clinically acceptable or superior products at 20 – 50 percent savings and improvements in the customer experience compared to the legacy products they replace.

Completing any required clinical trials

Your clinicians know best what products they need, want and how those products need to perform. Among the 10-15 pre-selected launch products in your global sourcing program (the easily convertible, high volume low hanging fruit), feedback from sample products in either formal or informal clinical trials needs to be acquired.

Once complete, the VAT and sourcing partner will together confirm the final specifications, pricing and contracts as required.

Coordinating the conversion dates

Within the overarching communications program, the team will need to be alerted to, and prepared for, the depletion of the legacy products and the arrival of your globally sourced replacements. Any lingering or foreseeable hurdles in delivery and receiving or other ‘last mile’ logistics issues must be resolved at this point. All inventory locations including patient rooms, crash carts, departmental stockrooms, unofficial inventory locations and the hospital’s main stockroom must be identified at this point as well.

Continuing communication

As discussed throughout the first three series, communication is critical to the success of your new program.  Ask yourself the following questions; has the entire supply chain team been made aware of the approved conversion? Has proper communication been sent advising the clinical staff that a legacy product is being eliminated and new product is being introduced to the organization? Has literature including product descriptions, possible differences and new MMIS number been placed in the stockrooms and breakrooms?  Once again, the communication element of your global sourcing program is critical to assuring smooth product conversions. Your global sourcing partner is available to help with any communication and education to the staff if needed.

Stay tuned for the final piece in the series: metrics evaluation and program expansion.

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