Home' The Source : Fourth Quarter 2010 Contents OPERATIONAL EXCELLENCE AWARD
This award is presented to members who have demonstrated best practices in streamlining and
maximizing supply chain operations and cost savings initiatives.
Michael Sutton and
EMORIAL HEALTH CARE SYSTEM
When Michael Sutton and Sherry Fusco
rganized the Close the Gap team at Memorial
Health Care System (MHCS) last year, their
oal was to find ways to cut costs. Now as they
look back on a savings of more than $12.3 million in just one year,
it's safe to say that they accomplished their goal.
"This was a collaborative e ort of finance, operations and our
physician partners," says Sutton, MHCS's executive director
of financial operations. "There were no sacred cows during
As the health-care industry faces a financial crunch, saving
money---without sacrificing quality and patient service---is vital
for an organization's financial health.
Working in teams that consisted of sta members, department
leaders, physicians and administration representatives, the Close
the Gap groups identified areas for reasonable savings and presented
their ideas to senior leadership. Sutton and the senior management
designated six consecutive Fridays as their days to review the
proposals, and then classified them according to how easy they
would be to implement: "Green" was a no-brainer; "yellow" meant
"let's discuss"; and "red" was a hot or political issue that might
included in the compliance-spend categories. But employees
weren't the only ones who used her sheets. Cardinal Lab repre-
sentatives also utilized Carlucci's tool when discussing lab-spend
requirements at each CHE facility. Having everyone literally on
the same page was a helpful communication tool.
In addition to her own documents, Carlucci is also a master
number cruncher who uses Cardinal's information to make
accurate reports and projections. She analyzes data for potential
conversion and savings, and then she documents the value of the
Though CHE lab colleagues support the idea of compliance,
there are times when some try to stray from the process. Because
Carlucci is so passionate about her role, she's also able to convince
others of the need to focus on the bigger picture of system-wide
ENTRASTATE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
Whether it's shipping, food services, house-
eeping or lab equipment, Jane Girling knows
ow to get the best price. After 30 years of
ndustry experience, she's an expert on han-
ling supply chain and procurement services.
In just one year, the assistant vice president of corporate materials
management for CentraState Healthcare System has helped the
organization save more than $2.2 million.
Like most procurement jobs, hers isn't straightforward. Girling
directs all aspects of an enterprise-wide supply chain including an
acute care hospital, nursing home, assisted living facilities, retire-
ment community, ambulatory surgery centers and community
"I've never had a boring day in all my years in this field," Girling
says. "One day I may be working on converting dressings, another
day I may be purchasing a commodity such as electricity, and on
another day negotiating a major piece of capital equipment."
Girling spearheaded the switch to HealthTrust as the primary
GPO. Using SpendTrust, the new spend-analytics tool, Girling
discovered that while CentraState was compliant with its former
GPO, they were below the 50th percentile rate in many categories
covered by contract. After the switch, the organization now is more
than 80 percent compliant.
"HealthTrust's one-price-for-all philosophy o ered us the best
savings," she says.
Girling also took advantage of SourceTrust, HealthTrust's medi-
cal device contracting team to negotiate a new orthopedic implant
contract, and its EnergyTrust for electricity. She estimates these
two contracts alone will save more than $1 million over the next
Girling met with each department director and the sales team
during implementation to ensure a smooth transition. "It was a
great deal of work, but HealthTrust provided exceptional support
and tools," she says. "And we were committed to fast-tracking
the transition to reap the significant savings in these challenging
For more on Girling's HealthTrust partnership, see page 36.
The Source | Fourth Quarter 2010 53
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