Changes and challenges in the Healthcare Supply chain | Modis

Changes and challenges in the Healthcare Supply chain

David Van Steenwinckel Posted 24 January 2020

In the healthcare ecosystem, the consumers are the patients and the product they want is a ‘better health’ at the best/most affordable price possible. Healthcare is not simply based on supply and demand. It can't be 'stocked' like a traditional product. Therefore, a health care's supply chain is very different from a regular company's supply chain.

Unique challenges within the healthcare supply chain are created because of the changing expectations of patients as consumers and the highly regulated nature of healthcare. This is also driving change. At the heart of these changes is supply chain management (SCM). SCM has a strategic role within the affordability and the quality of patient care, as well as in the cost structure of healthcare organizations.

The costs of SCM are one of the largest expenses in healthcare. This means that productivity improvements and a reduction of the healthcare supply chain costs are top priority. Most healthcare leaders are therefore looking to the healthcare supply chain as one of the biggest areas for saving opportunities. They are taking into account the impact SCM planning goals can make.

A more holistic and end-to-end approach to the healthcare supply chain is not only about improving efficiency and reducing costs. It is also about providing better healthcare in the least lead time and with lower costs for the patient. When striving to reach these goals, the healthcare supply chain is the most valuable asset for actionable data mining. Solutions for capturing and analysing supply chain data can provide better indicators of product need, can help to reduce waste, stabilize inventory... This can ultimately bring the costs down. An automated, technology-based supply chain can provide invaluable data and greater efficiency. This helps to reduce costs. But it can also help to improve patient outcomes by supporting a higher level of patient care.

In response to these unique challenges and changes, future-focused organizations are elevating the strategic role the supply chain plays. The key to creating an experiential supply chain is to anticipate the expectations of tomorrow with a thorough end-to-end understanding of the healthcare supply chain. A vision for the future and the rise of the supply chain into executive leadership functions are also a part of creating this. An experiential supply chain can help to turn patient care into a comprehensive healthcare experience.

At MODIS, our supply chain experts and consultants can help you to evaluate which key performance indicators are essential in response to your unique supply chain challenges. Our experienced project managers can also help you to implement the selected improvements to obtain an automated, technology-based supply chain that is prepared for the future's challenges.

David Van Steenwinckel
Senior Project Manager Life Sciences

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