Q&A with Michael Darling, VP Supply Chain, St. Luke’s Health System

by John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | May 17, 2019
Business Affairs
From the May 2019 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

MD: At the end of the day, what drives supply chain — especially in the next five to ten years — is, “how do you use data to work with your clinicians and business partners to create best practices?” As we’re looking at equipment life cycle when do we need to replace? Or do we need to perform remote diagnostics to be able to set that up and automate that process?

Going forward, how do you measure use and outcomes? We’ll be moving away from needing as many staff members to manage that function. We’re going to be using more AI to drive true efficiency in these processes. It’s going to be exciting.

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John Masini

Single Vendor Contract

May 20, 2019 09:28

Very interesting and insightful read. As hospitals consolidate and health systems grow, I understand how administratively a decision may be made to create consistency with 1 vendor on products. Idea being - higher volume of orders with 1 vendor to leverage lower cost per unit...... But the issue this creates is that new technologies are blocked from evaluation. Health systems go into multi-year agreements with 1 vendor, but finding this agreement is reached without bringing competition into the mix. Not evaluating other's prices or clinical capabilities and not knowing if there is a better option out there. I've never understood why any department would want to eliminate competition altogether - in the end, competition is ALWAYS BEST FOR THE CUSTOMER.... And I do believe St. Luke's is exclusive with some capital equipment companies.

Not to challenge, but I've always been interested in understanding the other side's rationale. How do you know that what you order is best for patients and department if you only look at 1 option every time you buy?

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