January 2023 | From HIDA's Healthcare Distribution & Supply Chain™ magazine
New Chair. Cara Skowronski takes the reins as the HIDA Board Chair for 2023. Cara Skowronski serves as President of Delasco, a Dallas-based leading supplier of consumables and equipment to dermatologists and estheticians worldwide. Cara is looking forward to collaborating with member companies to build the reputation of healthcare distribution and to inspire our leaders of the future.
New Congress. The voters sent a new Congress to Washington, ending unified Democratic control on the executive and legislative branches. In 2023, we anticipate this will lead to an increase in regulatory actions by the Biden administration and a search for bipartisan solutions on pressing healthcare issues in Congress.
New Challenges. The healthcare distribution industry was top of mind with policymakers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. As focus has shifted elsewhere, the case for preparedness must be made all over again. In 2023, this includes making the case for strengthening the medical supply chain as Congress considers the reauthorization of the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA).
New Progress. HIDA continues to build relationships with federal agencies on issues of pandemic preparedness and supply chain management. In 2022, HIDA hosted federal agency partners to meet with executives from large medical companies and independent distributors at both our Washington Summit and Streamlining Healthcare Expo. For 2023, we have extended and expanded our Cooperative Agreement with the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR) at HHS. This continued engagement is intended to strengthen communication channels developed during the pandemic to continue to share best practices.
Personal Experiences Inform View Of New HIDA Chair Cara Skowronski
It is a sincere honor to accept the role of HIDA Chairman for 2023. I’m honored to serve as your chair, and I look forward to collaborating to build the reputation of healthcare distribution and to inspire our leaders of the future.
Thanks to all of you who have held the gavel in the past for shaping this community. I am grateful to Michael Dubose for his service as Board Chairman. In 2022, he took the baton and ran with it, focusing on strategic objectives important to you and critical to our industry. Thank you, Michael, for your vision and service. I’m looking forward to working with you again this year to serve healthcare distribution.
“I’m honored to serve as your chair, and I look forward to collaborating with you in order to build the reputation of healthcare distribution and to inspire our leaders of the future.”
A Flash Of Wonder
So many of us chose healthcare careers to meaningfully contribute to the human experience. Others fell into our roles and found their “why” along the way. Whatever our paths, we found fulfillment knowing that the work we did — whether in sales, marketing, supply chain, accounting — was enabling excellent healthcare during someone’s first moments of life, last moments of life, and so many moments in between.
There’s still a flash of wonder each time I push through the doors of a hospital and feel instantly plugged into the hum. I marvel at all that is happening inside in that very moment. And even after two dozen years in healthcare, I get a bit starry-eyed. Of course, my experience now reminds me that the dishwashers in the kitchen just broke down, the CathLab is hollering at the pharmacy, and they’re short staffed again in MedSurg. Despite those frustrations — and even greater ones — providers and partners throughout our healthcare network manage to give their patients the best care they can night after night. I’m so proud to be a part of it.
Distributors Rose To The Occasion
Healthcare distribution has been in the spotlight more often through the challenges of the past few years. We truly rose to the occasion. While some of what we did was new, what remained constant was that we did whatever it took, as always — running backorder allocation models at 3 a.m. and then hand-delivering cases of gloves by 6 a.m. We were listening ears for weary providers and standing up kitting operations in our offices that were suddenly empty. Today, we’re still trying to determine whether there is a new normal, already working to play our part and preparing for the next call to action. More than anything, we’re just trying to make the best decision with the information we have for our customers and our team members.
Our Eyes On The Future
Throughout, HIDA has become even more valuable to me and my team. The colleagues and friends we’ve met through HIDA afford us a peer group with whom we can ask open questions, share solutions, and receive a boost of confidence when we’re feeling isolated. Thank you to Matt Rowan and the HIDA leadership and staff for listening to members and providing us with the information, collective voice, and connections to solve big problems together.
In 2023, HIDA is committed to building on the progress our industry has made. We will continue to broaden our membership across the medical supply chain. We will continue our workforce development and efforts to promote diversity and inclusion. As issues of sustainability become more prominent in healthcare, HIDA will stress the impact of distributors in reducing emissions and build lasting relationships with federal partners on pandemic preparedness.
Members: Check out the full magazine PDF for all articles in the January-February 2023 issue.