How can you improve healthcare supply chains?

There is no other supply chain that’s been impacted so much as that of the healthcare industry for need to comply to health, communication and data regulations. It’s more of a vicious circle since on the one hand there are data regulations to comply with so medical infrastructure needs to be upgraded accordingly, while on the other hand every new upgrade comes with complexities that had not been addressed ever before.


Another conundrum that the healtchare system is in typically revolves around the fact that financing is mostly meant for actual patient care and research, leaving little resources for a truly thorough digital transformation.

However, another approach would be for these organizations to take small steps towards a more integrated supply chain. Great achievements can be made in steady, incremental steps. Here are a few steps that are pretty straightforward and easy to follow and that will yield great results in the long run:

  1. Start with EDI

As times change and all industries are inching towards digitization and automation, the healthcare industry is also reorganizing itself to be more data-driven. Medical organizations need to reach full document interoperability since it deals with patient health records and any saved time would make a world of difference in some cases. These documents need to be sent and received swiftly, while traveling in absolute security. What’s more, these documents should be opened and read in any background, there needs to be absolute compatibility between systems.

Having B2B and EDI tools at their disposal, medical companies can accelerate not only their business processes, but also their inventory – this helps them ultimately gain considerable cost savings.

Have you considered the fact that if your front-end applications would be integrated with the supply chain you could actually gain more visibility and control over how resources are allocated and spent?

This way medical organizations can actually have straightforward and clear information when trying to identify what their average expenditure is, as well as if and how those numbers can be reduced etc.

  1. Think of the patients and choose B2B integration

Although there is too little similarity between the regular business customers and medical patients, it may be time to start seeing them as in the same way and grant them more power. If you begin seeing medical patients as business partners, you relationship will be a more collaborative one. It will make you consider their needs more and more, urging you to address these needs. Soon you will notice that processes have accelerated, you have less stagnant stock and your costs have gone down.

This way you will deliver high-quality services that medical patients need. Compared to other industries, such as retail for example, the medical industry needs a unique level of empathy towards the end users of these medical services – this is why aiming to offer patients high-standard products and services is key, propelling the industry and the world as we know it forward.

  1. Get the best out of managed services

As with any other industry, the challenges that the healthcare sector faces are based on a shortage of staff and resources necessary to undergo a huge transformation that leaves behind a more interoperable supply chain.

However, there is a solution that can take this weight right off of these medical organizations’ backs. There is a very efficient alternative to handling everything yourself and burying yourself under new and confusing information, as well as cumbersome tasks: leaving it all up to a B2B managed services provider.

This provider does not only have the necessary expertise to handle implementation and all the actual steps necessary to undergo a powerful transformation, but they also offer dedicated support, maintenance and upgrades throughout. This means that medical companies will have more time on their hands to invest in research and patient-oriented innovation and focus on the bigger picture.

  1. Don’t forget your warehouses need managing too

More often than not, warehouse management tends to fall last on a company’s to-do list. In order to say you have efficient warehouse management you will need to have strategies that deal with all types of issues, may they be stemming from within or as a result of outside circumstances, such as natural disasters, for example.

In either case, you need a system in place that can do effective damage control for any issues that may arise in the future. Since we are talking about the healthcare industry, it is especially crucial for supply chains, for example, to be more interoperable so that processes can accelerate, orders and distribution can be redirected and thus precious time can be saved when crisis hits.

By factoring in all the above mentioned steps, you can slowly chip away at that giant roadblock that’s keeping you from evolving and delivering better results. Slowly but surely wins the race and optimizes the supply chain.

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