GPO Standout – Broadlane

How compliant are your members to Broadlane contracts? How do you measure this? And what are your goals in this regard?
Broadlane’s clients are very compliant to our contract portfolio, as our clients make all the contracting decisions and we make a sizeable investment in client care to assure our clients maximize their portfolio utilization. We measure compliance by calculating spend coverage as a percent of total supply spend….Our typical client puts 70 to 80 percent of their annual supply spend through Broadlane contracts. Beyond national contract compliance, Broadlane’s Consulting Services work closely with our clients to contract for physician preference items and other specialty items which may be best contracted for locally.

Can you describe Broadlane’s approach to capital equipment contracting (e.g., reverse auctions, group buys, etc.)?
Broadlane offers clients access to [the] GPO portfolio for capital equipment contracting for acute care and sub-acute care facilities. For clients with specific needs, Broadlane can create and maintain a custom portfolio of capital equipment contracts….Broadlane’s team of experts analyzes each product category to understand the total cost of ownership, including acquisition cost, installation and training, service, upgrades, consumables and other indirect costs….After client committees determine the best choice… Broadlane negotiates contracts with suppliers. Other capital equipment contracting services include:

  • Live group buys.
  • Quote reviews, [allowing members] to check vendor quotes for capital equipment and ensure they are accurate….
  • Equipment planning.
  • Equipment assessments.
  • Budget review and assessment.
  • Bulk buys.

Does Broadlane engage in reverse auctions for non-capital items? If so, to what extent?
Yes. We have reverse auction technology and have successfully completed various reverse auctions for both national GPO contract awards and clients’ specific requests.

Can you describe Broadlane’s activities in the following areas:

  • Environmentally responsible purchasing. Broadlane supports and facilitates our clients’ mission to provide environmentally preferable purchasing (EPP) products/services to create safe and healthy environments for patients, healthcare workers and communities. Broadlane applies the EPP principles to all group purchasing contracting processes and ensures environmental considerations are presented to all client groups during product selection and contract decisions. Broadlane offers opportunities for our clients to purchase products that are environmentally safe and cost-competitive.
  • Support of minority/historically underutilized businesses. Broadlane supports diversity contracting to help our clients purchase from small, minority-, women- or veteran-owned businesses, as well as historically underutilized businesses. One of our clients recently increased their number of diverse suppliers 360 percent in one year.
  • Making your members aware of – and contracting for – innovative medical technology. One example is Broadlane’s recent strategic relationship with ECRI Institute for Live Group Buys, which helps present clients the latest information on innovative medical technology. ECRI Institute will be on-hand as an unbiased expert to provide the latest medical equipment for upcoming Broadlane Live Group Buys for CT and MRI. In addition, new products/services are brought to the attention of the Executive Steering Committee through submissions from vendors or by members of the Executive Steering Committee themselves. Also, Broadlane’s advisory committees have a standing agenda item to review/discuss innovative technology. Based upon their recommendation, the Executive Steering Committee may choose to contract for that particular technology.

Does Broadlane provide outsourced services to your members (that is, services provided by your organization, not by contract vendors)? If so, can you describe them?
Yes. Broadlane is the largest outsourcer of the healthcare supply chain in the United States. Our offerings include: sourcing, item master management, value analysis team management, transaction management and full supply chain management….Outsourcing services utilized by our clients (separately or completely) include:

  • Supply chain and purchasing department outsourcing
  • Day-to-day purchasing.
  • Custom contracting.
  • Enterprise resource planning.
  • Value-analysis-team leadership and management.
  • Receiving.
  • Distribution.
  • Par level/inventory management.
  • Procurement services
  • Transaction management.
  • Centralized procurement.
  • Item master management.
  • Contract management systems.
  • BroadLinkTM.
  • Informatics.

Does Broadlane provide onsite consulting to your members (that is, consulting provided directly by your organization, not by a contract vendor/consulting firm)? If so, can you describe these activities?
Yes. Broadlane provides consulting for:

Supply chain services.

  • Contracting: Custom (regional & local), physician-preference items, diversity and environmental.
  • Pharmacy: Medication use management and technology to help manage pharmacy.
  • Capital equipment services: Equipment planning and assessment, budget review and assessment.
  • Informatics: Decision support, spend analytics, benchmarking and technology to manage information.

Clinical services.

  • Procedure Optimization Program for cardiac and surgical.
  • Orthopedic program.
  • Medication usemanagement.
  • Customized programs.

Labor services.

  • Strategic sourcing for contract labor agencies.
  • Premium shift management.
  • Vendor management services.
  • Vendor management technology.

Does Broadlane provide members with access to an electronic exchange, allowing members to order products electronically, check order status, check pricing accuracy, etc.? If so, what is it called, and what are its capabilities?
Broadlane is the only GPO that runs and maintains its own e-commerce exchange. BroadLinkTM is Broadlane’s proprietary, provider-centric e-commerce exchange. It acts as an electronic data interchange between healthcare providers and vendors to reduce integration costs, monitor vendor service level agreements, augment electronic documents, and provide transaction reporting and recommendations for spend-efficiency improvements.

Can you describe the role of member advisory boards in your contracting process?
Broadlane’s client-driven process ensures that our clients make all contract award decisions, through a highly transparent process that is driven and governed by our clients, with Broadlane employees providing staff and facilitation support. As such, we established our Executive Steering Committee, a client-driven group that reviews contract award scenarios and makes award decisions for Broadlane national contracts. Advisory Committees (and ad hoc committees) of client clinicians and other end-users provide objective product evaluations, offer contract award recommendations to the Executive Steering Committee, and act as a feedback mechanism for our contract portfolio. Together, these groups ensure that clinicians and purchasing executives are involved….

To what extent does Broadlane assist members in local or regional contracting?
Broadlane offers custom contracting services for regional, local and physician-preference items.

Does Broadlane help members benchmark their clinical performance? If so, how?
Broadlane generally focuses on improving the financial performance of our clients. It is this focus that has made Broadlane such an attractive alternative to other GPOs. With that said, we utilize a variety of clinical comparatives to benchmark performance in various high cost areas (OR, cath lab, lab, etc.) and utilization of physician-preference items.

Does Broadlane help members benchmark their operational performance? If so, how?
Yes. Through an extensive reporting suite and the work of Broadlane’s Client Care teams, our clients can benchmark themselves against their peers and industry standards.

Does Broadlane offer information systems or reports to help members analyze and improve their supply chain performance (e.g., spending, contract utilization, product utilization)? If so, can you describe them?
Yes, through various data sources including BroadLinkTM (Broadlane’s proprietary e-commerce exchange). Broadlane’s Informatics Services, through which a full suite of reports are available, allow clients to access spend analytics, price verification summary, cost change, volume trend analysis and benchmarking with STAR (Sustainable, Transformational, and Actionable Results).

Does Broadlane organization offer members resources to help them:

Control the cost or usage of physician-preference items? Broadlane offers custom contracting for physician-preference items and allows the client to monitor cost and use through spend analytics.
Control spending on labor? Broadlane offers several ways for clients to control spending on labor: sourcing for contract labor agencies, temporary nurse labor and allied healthcare professionals; premium shift management; vendor management services; and vendor management technology.
Create and manage a vendor-credentialing process? For any client for which Broadlane provides outsourced supply-chain-management services, we employ our vendor credentialing process (policies, procedures, enforcement, etc.).

Can you describe the educational opportunities (meetings, conferences, webinars, on-line training) Broadlane offers its members?
Broadlane participates in over 40 industry events per year to provide employees and clients with educational opportunities for the industry. Broadlane’s University Training also offers clients and employees training via the Web or through webinars. Samples of client courses include: Supply Chain Education Program, Nursing and Pharmacy Courses, and Leadership Development.

Has Broadlane’s mission changed over the past five years? If so, how?

Finally, how does Broadlane differ from others in the market?
Broadlane’s difference from others in the market is a direct result of the approach we have charted in the industry. Our organizational and GPO philosophy is grounded on a number of core principles, including:

  • A Code of Conduct that sets the standard for our industry.
  • A contract award process driven and governed by our clients….
  • Leveraging the combined volume of our largest clients to achieve best-in-industry pricing through their ability and track record of collectively moving vendor market share in targeted expense categories.
  • Continual portfolio refreshment and unique sourcing strategies, including pre-commitment, capital equipment Live Group Buys, custom contracting and local sourcing for physician-preference items.
  • Unsurpassed customer service and resource support services….
  • A hands-on, local approach to value analysis, which involves physicians and clinicians in the decision-making process….
  • Standardization and utilization opportunities.
  • Industry-leading technology that helps our clients manage their entire supply spend and prioritize opportunities for savings.