By Erin Cristales, Vizient
It's not every day that asset management and gift wrapping are mentioned in the same breath, but Danny Cisneros, Vizient consulting director for capital, imaging and construction, says there's perhaps no more apt metaphor.
Think about it like this: You purchase a gift, and you need a bag to present it in. You're pretty sure you already have a few at home, but you just can't quite remember were you put them, so you buy new ones. By the time you find the bags you acquired previously, you already have a stockpile — and chances are, in a few weeks, you'll forget where you stored those too.
Hospitals often have a similarly difficult time keeping up with the exact breadth and location of assets, though theirs come with far heftier price tags. That's why Cisneros and the Vizient capital team recently entered into a strategic partnership with HANDLE Global, a leading provider of healthcare supply chain analytics and fulfillment solutions, to create Vizient® capital asset management. The tool helps health systems seamlessly plan, procure, manage and dispose of capital assets.
Since the rollout, the team has already seen increased adoption and success with provider members. For example, they assisted with a focused sourcing objective based on specialty needs identified by a member's procurement team. This focused objective targeted specific procedure mixes, which increased revenue for several sites. In an environment where margin pressures show few signs of easing, procurement — particularly in the capital space — is often a quick-win area that can have a ripple effect throughout the entire organization.
"Patients and health systems are reeling from economic impacts, including the cost of labor and goods," Cisneros said. "That creates so many different pressures for providers, which also creates an increased need for procurement teams to be the superhero in the facility because they are the ones who are going to be driving down costs."
Alongside the capital asset management system, Vizient will offer advisory services to maximize efficiencies and effectiveness of capital procurement processes and identify savings opportunities. The services include reporting that highlights standardization opportunities and improved contract utilization as well as assistance in implementing new equipment and technology.
After all, Cisneros says, now is no time to be reactive. By proactively forecasting what the future looks like in the capital space, health organizations can achieve far greater success — and bolster their bottom lines and patient experiences.
"It's all about what your patient flow is going to look like and what you need to purchase to ensure patient health and wellbeing," he said. "Is the post-op procedure going to take longer because you have antiquated equipment? Is the procedure going to take longer because you don't have a specialty bed? Providers have to understand what the utilization is with any type of procurement, whether it's med/surg, lab or capital facilities — and what does it mean for patient outcomes?"
Learn more about how Vizient works alongside hospitals to guide efficient planning and cost savings for healthcare construction, capital budgets and facility renovations.