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Supplylogix | Maximizing Supply Chain Capabilities for Pharmacies | Nathan Chapman

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Nathan Chapman

VP and General Manager

Pharmaceutical supply chain challenges have been a major cause of concern for the industry throughout 2020. The challenges are still very much prevalent, even as the world moves ahead in the era of the new normal. This pandemic caused a major global socio-economic impact and led to disruption in almost all facets of the industry. Modern companies equipped with the right tools and technologies have been quick to adjust to the changes. Organizations that still functioned on archaic systems were struggling to adapt to the business processes changes brought about by the pandemic. Slow to adapt companies had to put in more effort to understand the needed changes and adapting to the changes without the right technologies in place was daunting.

Added to that was the inability of companies to quickly onboard onto newer applications and get into the rhythm of modern cloud-based solutions. Some of the major issues that surfaced during the pandemic are:

  • The demand for therapeutics and/ or vaccines led to an overdrive of pressure on the industry.
  • The lack of resources and slow global travel have increased pharmaceutical supply chain disruptions.
  • Changes in quality standards have added new tasks to the workforce that were not part of their day-in-the-life and had to adapt to rapidly.
  • Changes in quality testing created adjustments in the test specification and additional steps in testing.
  • Disintegrated systems made it harder for the workforce to stay agile and adjust to the changes that came their way.
  • Inability to manage supply-demand cycles.

Founded in 2010, Supplylogix applications process millions of transactions every day on behalf of more than 12,000 national and regional retail pharmacies. Supplylogix is a high-growth software company that develops and delivers practical supply chain intelligence solutions for pharmacy and related businesses. Supplylogix, a division of McKesson Corporation, is based in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, and services a wide array of healthcare providers nationwide.

It’s important to plan your pharmaceutical inventory so you have the right medications in the right place and at the right time. If you don’t have the medications in-stock to fill your patients’ prescriptions at their convenience, you could lose them as customers. An intelligent pharmacy inventory replenishment strategy allows you to analyze your inventory productivity and establish a reordering process to maintain optimal in-stock inventory levels.

Pinpoint Order is pharmacy inventory replenishment software that uses predictive intelligence algorithms to centralize the inventory purchasing decision process. Our software can help you eliminate inventory waste, make purchasing and replenishment more intelligent, and run insightful analytics to inform inventory decisions. When you use Pinpoint Order to optimize your pharmacy inventory, you can spend more time on patient care instead of supply chain management.

Integrating Pinpoint Order software with your pharmacy management system enables you to:

  • Increase inventory productivity
  • Reduce working capital
  • Control in-stock and carrying cost parameters
  • Establish just-in-time replenishment

A Suite of Software Products

Hospitals and health care systems in the United States handle more than 35 million patients each year. These large operations are finding that the cost savings associated with effective pharmacy supply-chain management can have a big impact on the bottom line, as well as on patient care.

Supplylogix offers a suite of software products that enables pharmacies to gain competitive advantages. Pharmacies can leverage Supplylogix’s supply-chain tools to optimize their inventory replenishment, manage potential losses from unsaleable returns, and monitor their product movement.

UW Health, an integrated health system associated with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, serves 600,000 patients each year in the Upper Midwest region of the country. With six hospitals and 15 dispensing sites, UW Health processes upwards of 44,000 prescriptions per month. A large portion of their services is related to specialty pharmacy items, including diabetes, transplant, and HIV care, making their inventory costs exceptionally high compared to standard retail pharmacy.

Until 2016, the pharmacy inventory management at UW Health was largely a manual process. “The pharmacy software we were using did not give the whole picture of what we needed to know for inventory management,” said Carrie Boeckelman, RPh, BCACP, Manager of Ambulatory Pharmacy Services for UW Health.

Staff members routinely made decisions regarding minimums and maximums, often ordering large amounts of a drug in response to running out of stock a single time. “They went for the worst-case scenario, and their choices contributed to overstocking,” said Melissa Ngo, PharmD, BCACPA, Manager of Ambulatory Pharmacy Services for UW Health. “As a result, we had a lot of inventory dollars on our shelves that we did not need to have there. We knew we had to dig deeper.”

Boeckelman attended a conference where she was introduced to Supplylogix and was able to learn more about the software. “It sounded like it made great sense for us,” she said. Supplylogix later provided a demo including an overview of the specific opportunity benefits to UW Health, and the decision was made.

“We were doing the best we could manually, but Supplylogix really spoke to us,” Boeckelman said. Among Supplylogix’s software solutions, UW Health uses Pinpoint Order for replenishment management, Pinpoint Transfer for redistribution intelligence, Pinpoint Audit for assessing risk, and Pinpoint Monitor for tracking controlled substances.

“The Pinpoint Order software allows us to set maximums and minimums systematically based on industry best practices,” said Ngo. This control prevents unauthorized changes to ordering amounts and has seriously streamlined their inventory costs. “In the first six months of using the software, we reduced our managed inventory dollars by 23%,” Boeckelman said.

Even with a leaner inventory, UW Health distributes partial fills much less often than they had been before implementing Supplylogix. “What’s interesting is that we had more inventory on hand before, but it wasn’t the right inventory,” Ngo said.

Pinpoint Transfer is another powerful technology tool that UW Health uses. “Prior to Pinpoint Transfer, each of our pharmacies used to send out emails to the other locations with a list of overstocked items to ask if they were in need,” Ngo said. “The system now shows us which drugs should be sent to which site.” The cost savings involved in redistributing pharmacy stock are very significant.

“When it was a manual process we had very few transfers because no one had time to run each drug code to see if their site was using a particular medication,” said Boeckelman. “We now redistribute every week, and we sell through 90% of those drugs. Annualized, that’s $1.2 million not being lost to expirations.”

Pinpoint Audit and Pinpoint Monitor offer UW Health a new level of security around sensitive drugs. “Our internal audit department conducts routine narcotic audits, and some drugs came back highlighted,” Ngo said. “When we dug into the reports, we were able to explain the issue. We have a high number of pediatricians who treat ADHD, and those were the drugs that were flagged.”

UW Health implemented Supplylogix in 2016. Compared to manually managing inventory for 15 sites, the new tools have completely changed the way UW Health runs its pharmacies. Inventory costs are down, redistribution and sell-through rates are up, and workflow is optimized through automatic ordering and analytics report generation.

Move swiftly with intelligent pharmacy inventory redistribution software

Many factors contribute to excess supply and can cost you a lot of money in inventory shrinkage: Purchased medications that are not dispensed regularly; unsold drugs that occupy valuable shelf space; and products overstocked at one pharmacy that are in greater demand at a different location. Pharmacy inventory redistribution software can help your pharmacy take control of its non-productive inventory to empower you to get the best return on your investment.

Pinpoint Transfer is a pharmaceutical inventory redistribution tool that integrates with your pharmacy management system to maximize product use and minimize returns. Our centralized software provides in-depth visibility into non-productive inventory and gives you full control of product redistribution across your organization. With Pinpoint Transfer, you can organize your pharmaceutical inventory to facilitate a sell-through rate of up to 90 percent within 90 days of the transfer.

Integrating Pinpoint Transfer software with your pharmacy inventory management system enables you to:

  • Identify logical product redistribution transfers across your organization
  • Accelerate the movement of inventory to increase your sell-through rate
  • Locate and move non-productive inventory easily and efficiently
  • Optimize inventory management to reduce costs and increase profitability
  • Achieve return reductions that result in savings across your entire organization

Continuously audit your controlled substance inventory for diversion and theft

Your pharmacy is vulnerable because you carry and dispense tightly regulated controlled substances. Theft or diversion by employees is a constant concern. Physicians who overprescribe or customers who overuse drugs can compromise patient safety. Lax oversight of controlled substance dispensing can lead to loss of inventory, fines for regulatory non-compliance, and, potentially, forfeiture of your license. Pharmacy inventory control software can help protect you from theft or diversion and promotes compliance with state and federal laws that govern the dispensing of controlled substances.

Pinpoint Audit is pharmacy inventory control software that helps you identify the potential diversion and theft of controlled substances and other high-value medications. Our solution continuously monitors your controlled substance inventory and evaluates the risk of diversion by each pharmacy location. In-depth reporting capabilities enable you to compile and consolidate information on potential theft and diversion within a large chain or multi-store operation. Automated monitoring and precise reporting can help with the prompt detection of suspicious activity and facilitate the collection of evidence for an investigation.

Pinpoint Audit pharmacy inventory control software enables you to:

  • Proactively identify risk levels at every pharmacy, every day
  • Identify suspicious behavior trends
  • Analyze timing and frequency of inventory adjustments
  • Receive alerts for potential diversion based on proven risk factors

Expanding their Offerings

Expanding on its industry-leading Pinpoint suite of solutions, Supplylogix is excited to announce the availability of the latest enhancement to the Pinpoint Order® software. The new Inventory Segmentation feature expands on the existing functionality of Pinpoint Order, giving users a dashboard to view their medication categories, in groups of 10, and the associated inventory costs.

Pinpoint Order is an easy-to-use, highly configurable inventory management tool that provides pharmacies with centralized control of in-stock and carrying cost parameters. With the new Inventory Segmentation module, it now automatically groups and ranks drug ‘families’ based on the number of prescriptions dispensed over a 30-day period.

Having the associated NDC numbers, total inventory value and the calculated percentage of total inventory for each grouping delivers a snapshot of inventory movement and aids in the ordering process for each category from the most heavily prescribed to the least.

“Providing this categorized view of often costly inventory gives users the ability to make data-driven decisions on ordering activity, redistributing existing inventory to another location, or even returning it to the distributor” said Nathan Chapman, vice president & general manager, Supplylogix. “At its core, this new feature is central to the type of information we’re able to provide across our Pinpoint suite of inventory management software, giving our customers the insights they need to effectively manage their inventory.

Supplylogix Award

" Pinpoint Order is pharmacy inventory replenishment software that uses predictive intelligence algorithms to centralize the inventory purchasing decision process. "

Nathan Chapman

VP and General Manager

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