Imagine the following scenario:
A sales representative of a major medical OEM with a goal to sell a higher cost, “new and improved” version of a top-selling device is told “no thank you” by the health system’s supply chain management. Unwilling to accept that answer, the rep does a deliberate end-around to the system’s surgeons. The same representative then encounters a cost-effective program to reprocess the device he/she is trying to replace. Now what? Would you believe that threats to prevent access to other assets and disposables where the rep’s employer has a monopoly are common? Even worse, how about a threat to cut off access to the device in question until the system agrees to terminate its reprocessing program?
I have covered supply chain management practice across industries. Nothing like that scenario could ever happen elsewhere. But variants of that same narrative are a reality of our health system, despite taxpayers footing more than half the tab. No, the solution isn’t about arguing a supplier’s profit motive. Rather, we must recognize that rational checks and balances are reasonable and required. Alternatively, we might also learn to just say “no.”
To read the full article on Healthcare Supply Chain Management, click HERE.