Supply Chain Optimization Feasible in Pediatric Hospitals

Includes product standardization, logistical efficiency, inventory management and control

TUESDAY, Sept. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Optimization of the supply chain process is feasible in a pediatric perioperative setting, according to a study published in the September issue of the AORN Journal.

Janice L. Davis, R.N., from Huron Healthcare, and Robert Doyle, R.N., from Navigant Consulting -- both in Chicago, investigated whether optimization of the supply chain process is feasible to reduce nonlabor expenses in the perioperative setting of a pediatric hospital.

The investigators found that the optimization process incorporates activities from initial product selection, acquisition, and distribution, to inventory management and control. The value analysis process, an evidence-based product selection process, supports introduction of high-quality, cost-effective products into the pediatric environment based on current need. Use of the value analysis process should be methodically enforced. Product selection should consider factors that affect the supply chain process, such as clinical implications of the change and financial implications. Product sourcing must take into account the philosophy of the hospital administrators and supply chain executives. Products should be purchased through the primary distributor as often as possible, and locally negotiated contracts are another cost-saving measure. Members of the supply chain department should assess opportunities to improve logistical efficiency in the perioperative supply chain process. An initial inventory is necessary to identify products, their locations, values, and quantities, and should be updated regularly.

"Supply chain optimization can be achieved in a pediatric hospital through product standardization, logistical efficiency, inventory management, and inventory control," the authors write.

Both of the study authors disclosed financial ties to Navigant Consulting.

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