Tim Miller

Tim Miller

Tim Miller

Tim Miller

  • Senior Director, Supply Chain Services, Banner Health
  • Banner Health consists of 29 hospitals, including three academic medical centers; 5,851 licensed beds; and other related health entities and services in seven states; $1 billion in supply spend; $455 million in purchased services spend.

Tim Miller joined Banner Health in 1987, filling a number of roles through the years, including positions in materials management and supply chain services. In 2012, he was promoted to senior director of supply chain services, and today he oversees Banner Health’s entire supply chain operation, with a focus on supply chain strategy and operations.

 

The Journal of Healthcare Contracting: What has been the most challenging and rewarding project you have been involved in recently?

Tim Miller: In March 2015, Banner acquired the University of Arizona Health Network, adding two academic medical centers and resulting in the formation of Banner University Medicine Division (BUMD). BUMD currently accounts for 31 percent of our entire $1.5 billion in spend for supplies and purchased services, making it essential to integrate BUMD into our contracts and operation as quickly and as effectively as possible. Over the last 18 months we have worked through a very organized mergers and acquisition plan with representatives from each supply chain area to integrate over 600 supplier and purchased services contracts. In addition to the contract integration, we have converted many product lines to our standard formulary and implemented many standard operating procedures within these facilities. This effort has not been without its pain points, as we have had to complete this work with limited resources while learning the nuances of an academic culture. In the first year alone, we have saved in excess of $8 million within the supply and purchased services categories in our Tucson market alone.  This savings is in addition to the $42 million saved in 2015 across our entire system.  Although this project has been a strain on our operation and our team, the reward has been well worth the effort. Not only have we have added an academic component to our system but we have also integrated some amazing talent onto our team.
JHC: Please describe a project you look forward to implementing in the next year or two.

Miller: One project I am particularly excited about is our Strategic Supplier Partnership Program. This will allow us to further develop our supplier relationships by segmenting them into tiers based on strategic need and performance, allowing us to focus our limited resources in the right place. By measuring performance, we will have a clear way to build a stronger relationship with each supplier, as well as critical information as we move through the contracting cycle. In addition, this program will allow us to build relationships with supply chain experts within each organization, with the goal being to improve the end-to-end supply chain.

 

JHC: What are the most important qualities you look for in a supplier partner?

Miller: We want suppliers that are truly transparent and can continue to provide value throughout the course of the contract.

 

JHC: What is the greatest change we can expect to see in healthcare contracting in the next five years?

Miller: Our ability to understand our complete cost per patient episode and integrate that into our contract strategy will be a game changer for our organization.