This month, the healthcare community that transacts e-commerce through the GHX exchange is reaching a significant milestone: $50B in healthcare purchasing transactions in the current 12 month period. Why is this important? Simple: because electronic transactions are less expensive to process than manual (phone or fax) transactions, and transactions through GHX are less expensive to process than even traditional EDI. You may have heard mention (just on rare occasions) that healthcare needs to reduce costs. Today, GHX customers are significantly reducing costs without any negative impact on patient care. In fact, electronic business is having positive impact on patient care.
Let’s first look at driving down costs. Since January of 2010, GHX and our provider and supplier customers have reduced costs by more than $2.3B. That’s moving us toward our goal of reducing $5B in costs in a five-year period. And it’s being done today, by running our supply chain more efficiently and driving more automation in healthcare. How’s it work?
Then take this a step further and consider how the supply chain can impact patient care. It’s been proven in a number of industries that when you focus on quality, you can reduce costs by standardizing processes. So as we drive quality up – in this case, the quality of patient care – we can also drive costs down. Today, hospitals and suppliers are working together to collaborate on improving the business processes they share. They’re looking at the mutual touch points, identifying ways to streamline and automate work and, perhaps most importantly, talking about when and how they can improve each of their respective businesses by appropriately sharing data. It’s new, and it’s starting to happen now.
With the nation-wide goal of reducing healthcare cost while improving patient care, I feel like GHX and its customers are making a real difference today. With every dollar that passes through GHX, we are empowering organizations to save and streamline their back-end processes to free up time, money and resources to focus on what really matter – the patient.