January 29, 2013

IDN Leaders Name 5 Keys to Better Channel Partnerships at HIDA Manufacturer-Distributor Seminar

Alexandria, Va. – Collaboration must become much more than a buzzword in the healthcare supply chain. That was the message shared among 90 manufacturer, distributor, and provider executive panelists and participants at the HIDA Educational Foundation’s Manufacturer-Distributor Seminar offered last week.

The newly redesigned program focused on channel partnerships and how they are changing in today’s healthcare environment.

Executives from Christus Health, the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital, and Broward Health offered insights in an IDN focus group which opened the seminar. Among the insights these providers shared with manufacturer and distributor attendees:

  • Walk a mile in my shoes. Understand what’s going on in the hospitals’ world by “co-laboring” with them. This will reveal insights for improving the channel and reducing total costs.

  • Target waste. Help providers identify ways to reduce utilization. For example, help analyze products that are included in procedure packs but not used.

  • Align with the provider. Both sides should more freely share information – not just fill rate data – to jointly find ways to improve efficiency. Sales incentives should support the provider’s supply chain and standardization goals.

  • Give your customer a clear executive level contact. Providers expressed desire to have an ongoing vendor relationship with someone who has the appropriate level of understanding and experience to problem-solve quickly.

  • Provide empirical evidence related to outcomes. Providers will be measured on their quality performance, and are looking for product solutions that will clearly contribute to that performance.

Attendees applauded the seminar’s new format and focus. “One of the most informative seminars I have attended,” said one participant.

HIDA’s next Manufacturer-Distributor Seminar will hone in on new realities in the extended care market. Executives from some of the country’s largest long-term care provider organizations will participate, including Golden Living and Genesis Healthcare. The seminar takes place May 7-9 in Austin, Texas; registration is now open. Find out more about the May Manufacturer-Distributor Seminar.

HIDA will offer another Manufacturer-Distributor Seminar focused on the lab market November 12-13 in Washington, D.C.

Amy Lee, 202-280-8816

About the HIDA Educational Foundation
The HIDA Educational Foundation is an affiliate of the Health Industry Distributors Association, the premier trade association representing medical products distribution. The Foundation is devoted to education and research that increases efficiency and effectiveness within the healthcare supply channel. For more information, visit www.HIDA.org or www.streamlininghealthcare.org.