GHX participates in and attends many healthcare industry conferences each year in addition to hosting the annual Healthcare Supply Chain Summit. In the course of attending these conferences, we typically see common themes that run from event to event. It would come as no surprise that the current environment finds healthcare providers continuing to look for opportunities where costs can be reduced and programs can be operationalized while still contributing to the quality of patient care.
What are some of the biggest challenges that vendors face with credentialing?
When hospitals began creating credentialing programs they turned to their vendors, holding them accountable for meeting the new credentialing requirements. It turned out that many vendors were not prepared for the scope of this event. As companies endeavored to meet the variety of compliance requirements for each healthcare organization, the struggle to incorporate credentialing into everyday business practices came into the spotlight.
Protecting patient healthcare data is becoming a greater challenge for healthcare facilities as the industry transitions from manual to electronic information storage and sharing. The rising number of criminal attacks on hospital and healthcare system data and the sheer magnitude of individuals (over 30 million) affected by data breaches has resulted in greater regulatory pressure on healthcare organizations.
Healthcare providers need visibility into vendor contracts across the entire organization in order to drive contract compliance, consolidate vendor spend and reduce supply costs. At the heart of improving transparency and visibility is an effective contract management strategy. Without it, organizations lack the ability to obtain and access the data necessary to make smart purchasing decisions and maximize cost savings opportunities.
This past spring, many provider organizations received notice of a yet another regulatory compliance assessment as part of their HIPAA accountability checklist.
The Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced the start of the Phase 2 HIPAA Audit Program to ensure that “policies and procedures adopted by covered entities and their business associates meet selected standards and implementation specifications of the Privacy, Security, and Breach Notification Rules.” Indianapolis-based Eskenazi Health, one of the largest safety net health systems, was one of those organizations.
The deadline for Class II medical devices passed last month, and with Class III devices, all implantables regardless of class, and now Class II devices covered by the UDI regulation, more than 50 percent of devices sold in the United States should be labelled with unique device identifiers (UDI). However, a considerable number of manufacturers are still struggling to fully comply with the rule or create a sustainable process for ongoing compliance. Some may not have even begun the process. The final UDI ruling was published in September of 2013. With three years to prepare and several deadlines already passed, what is standing in the way of manufacturers? It turns out there is more than one reason many manufacturers haven’t completed their initial submissions to the FDA’s Global UDI Database (GUDID).