The organization I work for purchases support contracts for software that is used to deliver care to patients. The usage of the software support is not directly in the supply chain but is needed in order to ensure safe business operations for patients. If there is a software issue, this could mean that a provider is not able to access or utilize a tool needed to care for the patients. There are many contingency supply chain items that are there but are not used in the standard supply chain cycle.
Supply Chain is managed by a Director of Operations. She understands what it takes for good supply chain management. This level position is required because of the complexity of the current healthcare supply chain environment. Not only are physical supplies required, so are intangible services and supplies to account for. For an organization of this size, the larger the organization grows, the more complex the supply chain system. Not only is the system complex, but healthcare supply chain does not account for attempting to make the most profit, but serve the needs of a healthcare organization delivering patient care.
LaPointe, J. (2019, March 14). Exploring the role of Supply Chain Management in Healthcare. RevCycleIntelligence. Retrieved August 25, 2022, from https://revcycleintelligence.com/news/exploring-the-role-of-supply-chain-management-in-healthcare
In the restaurant industry, I would classify purchases intended to be used directly as products and services that end with the consumers. Some examples of these purchases would be the floor and coffee beans purchased to be delivered to customers as a finished product. Purchases intended to be used indirectly are products and services used to support the organization. For example, we use a point-of-sale system with software sales and inventory tracking.
In the healthcare industry, supply chain management is the process that allows medical providers to identify and purchase products and services required to accommodate healthcare consumers. A purchase that is intended to be used directly would be pharmaceuticals or testing and surgical equipment for patient treatment. A purchase for indirect use would be items and services supporting the facility’s operations. An excellent example of this would be sharp containers or cleaning supplies and services.
At my organization, many individuals are responsible for supply chain development. For example, I’m responsible for sourcing and fostering relationships with vendors for all of our products. We have management from differing departments tracks and purchases products to meet the need of the organization and consumers.
Senna, P., Reis, A., Santos, I.L., Dias, A.C. and Coelho, O. (2021), “A systematic literature review on supply chain risk management: is healthcare management a forsaken research field?”, Benchmarking: An International Journal, Vol. 28 No. 3, pp. 926-956. https://doi.org/10.1108/BIJ-05-2020-0266