Trade Groups Question Premier’s New Device Requirements
Devicemakers contracting with Premier healthcare alliance will have to incorporate GS1 Healthcare US supply chain standards in their contracts.
The group purchasing organization announced last week that it will require the standards in its contracts to help improve patient safety. But industry representatives counter that the standards are more focused on supply chain management. Premier will adopt the following standards:
- Global trade item number (GTIN) — a standardized number used to identify medical devices at various packaging levels;
- Global location number (GLN) — a standardized number used to identify any parties that have been in contact with a product, from manufacturers to nursing stations; and
- Global data synchronization network — a network that stores GTIN and GLN data, allowing users to access product information.
Premier’s new requirements will lead to “increased patient safety, a decrease in supply chain costs and faster order-to-cash cycles,” Joe Pleasant, Premier’s chief information officer and senior vice president, said. “Patients today face a significant risk that a recalled medical device or product could be inadvertently used in their treatment because of the inability to rapidly locate it in the hospital.”
However, Jeff Secunda, associate vice president of technology and regulatory affairs for AdvaMed, said, “Any person that’s being honest would say the huge immediate, measureable benefit is in supply chain efficiency.” He added that the potential benefits for patient safety — which are not immediately measureable — would be secondary to supply chain management.