The Healthcare Hub

Lessons from HHS Secretary Sebelius: Accelerating the Rate of Change in Healthcare

posted by: Derek Smith
Friday, February 15, 2013

At the recent National Health Policy Conference in Washington, the theme of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’ keynote address was speeding up the rate of change in healthcare.

Reading an article about her keynote address in Healthcare IT News (@HITNewsTweet) made me think about how GHX and its customers have readily embraced change in the industry for several years now. Sebelius noted how providers are embracing data tools to improve care, and I’ve seen this proven in our pilot projects focused on the implantable device supply chain (IDSC). By utilizing tools to better track these devices and begin compiling a more accessible, less error-prone database of their use, our provider and supplier customers are embracing change and freeing up resources to provide better care. Conversations about the IDSC are underway: GHX hosts a series of Implantable Device Special Interest Group meetings, to share best practices and lessons learned related to managing implantables. The most recent Special Interest Group meeting took place in January, and the next meeting is scheduled for April to discuss data synchronization.

Sebelius also mentioned the importance of care coordination. A critical aspect of coordinating care is trust between organizations. Only by partnering to share information can our industry coordinate for better care and efficiency. By sharing data through GHX, our customers are showing that they’re building trust in their trading partners and can achieve savings and efficiencies for both parties.

Through Sebelius’ speech, we are once again reminded that providers and suppliers cannot sit on the sidelines and wait to see how things turn out in the industry. The time for change was yesterday, and organizations that are already pushing ahead and embracing change will thrive.

But, it’s not too late for other organizations to start embracing (and accelerating) change. One way to catch up is to connect with the organizations that are ahead of the game. For this reason, GHX is hosting the 2013 Healthcare Supply Chain Summit in Las Vegas in May. This event will bring together providers and suppliers who are actively seeking supply chain change within their organizations to share best practices with colleagues and the industry. Registration is now open for the Summit, and we are looking forward to discussing not only the success stories from the industry so far, but to an open dialogue about how we can work together to accelerate greater change and move healthcare to the next step in its evolution.