How To Use Predictive Analytics In The Hospital Supply Chain

Many hospitals still rely on manual processes or antiquated technologies for managing their expensive supplies and implants. The concept of predictive analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) in their supply chains may seem like a remote possibility, but this doesn’t necessarily have to be the case.

Advances in hospital supply chain technologies over the last decade have now made it possible for hospitals to realize the benefits of predictive analytics in inventory management. Real-time data gathering technologies, such as RFID-enabled smart cabinets, can help hospitals gather the data needed to harness the incredible power of AI and predictive analytics. As this article by Chris Luoma at Health Data Management explains:

“Properly managing inventory levels is a challenge. In fact, many hospitals still cling to the “more is better” mindset when it comes to supplies. More inventory on hand reduces the risk of running out, ensuring the highest possible care can be delivered to patients at all times. However, excess supply drives up costs and increases waste for those products that expire before use.

Just-in-time (JIT) delivery is one way hospitals combat overstock and waste. Although it requires quite a bit of manpower to execute, JIT delivery is a highly efficient system, well suited for the regular course of business. However, if there is a disruption, such as a natural disaster or flu outbreak, JIT is less efficient and costs can soar.

As more data becomes available through increased levels of automation, supply chain teams can use predictive analytics to better forecast demand. Synthesizing historical and real-time data from multiple systems will enable teams to gain insight into case mixes, anticipate the types of cases that are likely to come through the door, and the supplies required to support those cases.

Moreover, predictive analytics will enable more intelligent, data-informed decisions throughout the entire delivery process. With better planning, a distributor can understand what a provider needs to stock. Manufacturers can use that data to see what needs to be produced, including the raw materials. This will let the industry reduce excess capacity from delivery systems, and ultimately reduce risk.”

Read the entire article here: How predictive analytics will impact the supply chain in the 2020s

In order to better compete in the 2020s, hospitals will have to find ways to reduce waste throughout the system, including within the supply chain. Predictive analytics will bring the promise of increased efficiency and reduced waste to those hospitals and health systems that pursue its benefits. However, a key challenge will be ensuring a reliable, real-time view of all supplies and their usage trends so artificial intelligence can make the proper conclusions. A system like iRISupply marries hospital inventory management software with RFID cabinets to provide a just-in-time system for managing key supplies and implants. This AI-ready software will also arm you with the data you need to make the best re-ordering and stocking decisions possible. iRISupply will not only provide you with the usage data and reports you need, but will take it one step further and provide actionable recommendations about which products are overstocked, understocked or that can even be eliminated altogether. Mobile Aspects supply chain experts will also sit down with you quarterly as part of a best-in-class customer success program to discuss strategies to optimize your inventory mix and review the data behind those suggestions. By closely managing PAR levels and setting up interfaces for automatic re-ordering, the twin problems of stock-outs and bloated inventories can be successfully and sustainably eliminated.