November 24, 2021
By Scott Keith, ETL/Data Architect; Prodigo Solutions
Early last year Prodigo asked, “Why is data quality such a challenge in healthcare?” Asking the question is not the hard part; fixing the problem is where we run into challenges. Health systems, on average, purchase 35,000+ unique items each year from 2,000+ vendors, with many of these contracted items having multiple associated prices. This leaves health systems with hundreds of thousands of items, prices and supplier contracts where data needs to be maintained across multiple systems and data silos. Maintaining a dynamic link between the source of truth and the entire supply chain ecosystem is the true challenge that most IDNs face.
Addressing healthcare’s supply chain data problems is part of Prodigo’s DNA. In 2020, Prodigo expanded its Data Strategy to harmonize item data from across its community of trading partners – health systems, manufacturers, distributors and GPOs; delivering a standardized set of data attributes and enriched data to both ERP and clinical systems. Prodigo’s Virtual Item Master enables each health system to manage their own item formularies, enrich items with attributes, manage price changes, and share data with its Marketplace procurement platform and through native integrations with the industry’s preferred ERP systems.
With 2021 largely in our rear view, data continues to be a cornerstone of Prodigo’s investment in digitization of the supply chain. Modernization included investments into tighter connectivity with new cloud-ERP systems along with additional resources invested into building a data enablement platform that will serve as the footings of a modern, clinically integrated digital supply chain. Additionally, Prodigo began tracking operational benchmarks which provide performance indicators to drive supply chain improvements that reduce costs. Data quality, standardization, transparency, and ecosystem-wide interoperability continue to be focus areas in Prodigo’s data strategy and product roadmap through 2022.
Through these data enablement efforts, Prodigo is positioned to give real-time decision support for supply chain procurement; using data-driven insights to direct user behavior at the point of service. The modern digital supply chain uses transparency to improve outcomes by controlling the point of service and enforcing compliance across the Procure to Pay lifecycle.
Prodigo provides supply chain with the tools needed to manage large and dynamic datasets and to build best in class supply chains that are responsive, resilient, and compliant. Several initiatives were undertaken in 2021 to meet these data-driven objectives:
- Data Hub – Prodigo’s new Autonomous Data Extract (ADE) process was created to operationalize a client’s contract data in their Navigator platform to deliver purchasable items with correct contract pricing to the requester at the point of the requisition in Marketplace. Additionally, the extract utility provides application usage data and financial analysis to empower reporting. The power of ADE is also in its ability to quickly configure data extracts from various sources without requiring programming. This allows Prodigo to react to changing business needs in near real time so that clients have access to the right data at the right time.
- Virtual Item Master – Data Hub’s Virtual Item Master is a master data [MDM] platform to manage a customer’s prescribed item formulary. Items can be enriched with various item attributes and associated contract prices. The item enrichment workflow includes automated item classification, item description standardization and abbreviation, item attribution and contract price synchronization. Customer data is enriched with attributes from 3rd party sources, such as manufacturers, global standards organizations, and public registries like the FDA; creating a complete picture of the item to inform clinical and supply chain workstreams. In addition, cleansed data is used to provide context within the requisitioning process. By applying embedded search ranking logic, Prodigo is able to prioritize a user’s search results; directing the user to preferred options right from the point of service.
- Data Integration Gateway – Data Hub’s data gateway extends options for integrating data, from multiple sources, into the client’s technology ecosystem. Improvements in matching algorithms have been made to better integrate disparate data. Additionally, run-time data transformations map contract price and UOM data across various distribution channels. Finally, the data gateway supports downstream data analytics, data enrichment, and data interoperability across enterprise applications; providing a consistent and seamless data enablement platform.
- Data Insights – Prodigo’s new business intelligence platform provides interactive dashboards to help monitor and highlight performance indicators and assess risks in the procurement process. Efforts include improved item categorization, manufacturer standardization, and ranking are used to build comparative analysis for vendor performance and price parity. Visualizations give users the ability to identify trends and take corrective actions based on the opportunities and risks identified.
Creating, managing, analyzing, and distributing data requires a focus on many aspects of an organization’s technologies, processes and resources. Looking at one, or some, of these dimensions through a single data management lens is a start; but, looking at the big data picture through multiple lenses provides the most complete perspective required to develop meaningful insights. The industry has taken great strides towards laying the foundation of a modern, data driven supply chain. 2022 will bring with it the expansion of insightful analytics, data delivery tools, and seamless integration with Prodigo’s suite of applications.
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