Shifting to a Value-Centric Industry Requires UDI Adoption | GHX

Denise Odenkirk

Assistant Vice President – Sales
Thursday, October 23, 2014

Shifting to a Value-Centric Industry Requires UDI Adoption

The resounding message I heard from the Advamed MedTech Conference in Chicago is that the MedTech industry needs to prepare for a transformative shift in how business is done in healthcare as we transition from a healthcare system that was traditionally focused on volume to a leaner, optimized healthcare system that focuses on value. Throughout the conference, the message was reinforced as industry leaders from manufacturers, distributors, payers and providers emphasized the need to transform the practice of medicine in America to focus on value.

The resounding message I heard from the Advamed MedTech Conference in Chicago is that the MedTech industry needs to prepare for a transformative shift in how business is done in healthcare as we transition from a healthcare system that was traditionally focused on volume to a leaner, optimized healthcare system that focuses on value. Throughout the conference, the message was reinforced as industry leaders from manufacturers, distributors, payers and providers emphasized the need to transform the practice of medicine in America to focus on value. The shift will require the industry to more fully leverage data analytics to revise protocols and procedures so that patient outcomes and costs are improved. Value will be the epicenter of everything that is done in healthcare and will be defined not just by the cost of a procedure but by measuring patient outcomes following a procedure, readmission rates and the time it takes for a patient to get back to work.

Pivotal to the shift to value-based healthcare systems will be transparency and collaboration between manufacturers and providers working together to take out costs while improving patient outcomes. Clearly the winners will be the manufacturers, distributors, providers and payers that take a broader more holistic look at how to optimize patient outcomes beyond the day of the procedure. For manufacturers to ensure a new product gets used, they will need to be able to demonstrate longer term outcomes data to support the usage of their products over existing products and protocols.

Susan Devore, President and CEO of Premier, pointed out that “the pharmaceutical industry has standardized product identifiers which enables patient outcomes analysis whereas the medical tech industry has not adopted a standard product identifier.” To truly measure value and outcomes from a longer term perspective, the Med Tech industry needs to accelerate the adoption of unique device identifiers (UDIs) from the point of manufacturing, to the point of use and to the electronic health record so that we can analyze longer term patient outcomes. Manufacturers need to broaden their strategy for UDIs adoption beyond the submission of UDI data attributes to the FDA. Sharing UDI data attributes with providers via a GDSN-certified data pool should be viewed as a critical component of a manufacturers UDI strategy so that they are amongst the first to have their product data captured on a patient’s electronic health record.

Doing UDI ‘right’ is critical to avoid frustrating rework. One of my primary responsibilities at GHX is working with manufacturers to help them define their UDI strategy and approach. We are uniquely positioned to help manufacturers disseminate their UDI product attribute data from a regulatory and commercial perspective by leveraging our best-of-breed UDI submission solution which publishes UDI data to the FDA GUDID and also to a GDSN-certified data pool, Health ConneXion. We have built our solution and approach based on knowing the importance of product data to enable the shift from volume to value in healthcare.

I welcome your ideas on how the industry will adopt UDI product attributes so that the electronic health record can be used for long term patient outcomes analysis.

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