Publisher’s Letter July 2010

RPC Mindshare

Virtual IDNs, Regional Purchasing Coalitions, Collaborative or Shared Service Centers (or whatever you call them) are the future of Healthcare contracting. The numbers prove it. We have identified 125 Purchasing Coalitions comprising 820,000 staffed beds, 30 million annual admissions and 127 million outpatient visits.

In late June, MDSI (Publisher of The Journal of Healthcare Contracting) hosted the first-ever exploration of these purchasing coalitions in Atlanta, Ga. The 2010 Hospital Purchasing Coalition Seminar had many RPCs from around the nation. Over 100 suppliers attended to hear the direction of these RPCs, and Suppliers were able to formulate their strategic direction and understand how to best handle the balance between IDNs, GPOs and now these RPCs.

The meeting held quite a few surprises for all in attendance, including how most of these RPCs are very committed to their GPO. And it wasn’t just that they were connected, but how satisfied and happy they are with their GPO’s success in conducting the RPC’s contracting initiatives.

It was also surprising just how clear-minded the RPC executives were about the future and how they prioritize each category that would come up next for bid, and what their expectations of how success is defined, not just their expectations on savings or best price. They also seem genuinely concerned about the performance of the contract for the suppliers they entered an agreement with.

Suppliers from around the country attended as well. Many sales managers, national accounts directors/managers, corporate account managers and key account managers attended, all showing up to determine what their organization should do to best handle the balance of contracting with IDNs, GPOs and now RPCs.

The attendees gained a lot of clarity on how the RPCs will fit into their strategy, but questions still remain as these organizations take on more formal structures with more formal processes.

If you would like to know more about The 2010 Hospital Purchasing Coalition, Seminar, please stay tuned to The Journal of Healthcare Contracting. In our August issue we will have full editorial coverage.

Thanks for reading this issue of The Journal of Healthcare Contracting.

John Pritchard About John Pritchard

John Pritchard is the publisher of The Journal of Healthcare Contracting as well as The Major Accounts Exchange (The Max).

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