Cardinal Health has announced the launch of Velocare, a supply chain network and last-mile fulfillment solution capable of reaching patients in one to two hours with critical products and services required for hospital-level care at home. Through a strategic collaboration with Medically Home, Cardinal Health at-Home Solutions is now supporting a Medically Home health system customer with Velocare, collectively enabling scaled, high-acuity care in the home.
Velocare brings together Cardinal Health capabilities through a combined offering intended for health systems, payers, digital health companies, telehealth providers and other entities moving high-acuity care to the home. Legacy Cardinal Health capabilities include global logistics and distribution expertise, management of a large network of suppliers and vendors, and access to a wide range of home-based care providers. The pilot will test the use of new technology, new order handling processes, small-format depots and short-haul delivery vehicles to enable safe and consistent hospital-level care in the home.
"We're excited to further expand our at-Home Solutions supply chain and logistics excellence to now reach patients receiving hospital-level care at home," said Rob Schlissberg, president, at-Home Solutions. "With their mission of putting the patient at the center of care, combined with their differentiated supply chain network, Medically Home leads the way in bringing the hospital home. Our collaboration is driving scale and efficiency, and ultimately provides positive patient outcomes."
With the right infrastructure in place, patients who were historically admitted to brick-and-mortar hospitals such as those with severe pneumonia, complicated urinary tract infections, cellulitis, blood infections and congestive heart failure exacerbations can now receive high-quality, safe, hospital-level care in the comfort of their homes. The Velocare pilot includes real-time evaluation of the technology, service levels, effectiveness, patient experiences, plus consideration for future growth in new markets.
A recent study by McKinsey & Company estimates that up to $265 billion worth of care services for Medicare fee-for-service and Medicare Advantage beneficiaries could shift to the home by 2025 without a reduction in quality or access1. The same research demonstrates how stakeholders — including payers, healthcare facilities and physician groups, home-based care providers, technology companies and investors—could see substantial value by providing patients with care in the comfort of their homes1. Potential benefits include cost savings due to reduced overhead and more efficient clinician protocols, increased safety due to a reduced risk of hospital-acquired infections and medical errors, plus increased patient satisfaction.
"The ability to further scale the delivery of goods to the home will advance the rapidly growing hospital-at-home market, driving scale and efficiency for Medically Home's high-acuity care model," said Rami Karjian, CEO of Medically Home. "The complexity of supply chain logistics is one of the significant barriers to health systems providing hospital-at-home care to their patients. This collaboration with Cardinal Health further enables the transformation of the delivery of patient care, which is at the heart of everything we do."
"Like Medically Home, we envision a future where the highest-quality care is available to patients anywhere," said Schlissberg. "Together, we're advancing this concept of care anywhere with the pilot of Velocare, demonstrating our ability to operate – and grow – within the evolving hospital-at-home model."
How Velocare works
1. Order: Orders are placed through the Velocare platform for specific goods and/or services to be delivered to patients receiving care in hospital-at-home programs. Common items available through delivery include medical waste containers, medically tailored meals, medical supplies, medical devices, and remote patient monitoring (RPM) technology. All contracting, credentialing, and integration within the Velocare supplier network is managed by Cardinal Health.
2. Route: When an order is placed, a care coordinator team reviews and routes that order to the nearest local Cardinal Health depot or warehouse for immediate service.
3. Deliver: The depot team then loads the ordered items into a Cardinal Health vehicle and promptly delivers them to the home in coordination with the patient and/or their care team. Throughout this process, Velocare technology provides visibility to ensure care is delivered to patients on time.
4. Collect: Once a hospital-at-home stay is complete, Cardinal Health will arrange for the collection of remaining medical supplies. Any RPM technology will be cleaned, tested and reconditioned in a facility registered by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to then be redeployed. Cardinal Health will also consolidate all billing and invoicing across its network of suppliers to streamline the payment process.