UPS has revealed new field inventory technology specifically for medical devices, which it claims can achieve a 20-50% reduction in inventory and a 10-30% reduction in expedited order requests.
The technology has been developed in collaboration with WebOps, a medical device logistics and analytics technology provider, and Baxter Planning, an inventory planning and optimization solutions provider.
Specifically, the WebOps application enables precise tracking of surgery schedules, physician preferences, inventory availability and movement of surgical kits and implants. Surgeons and hospitals, device and instrument manufacturers, and distributors can also communicate about implant usage, product needs and consumption.
Baxter Planning’s solution provides unified inventory planning for the consigned inventory across hospitals and forward stocking locations to simultaneously improve order fulfillment and productivity while helping to reduce inventory and transportation costs.
According to UPS, the majority of medical device inventory lies outside a manufacturer’s direct control, vacillating between field representatives and hospitals. This limited visibility can result in redundant inventories within local markets and increased inventory carrying costs, potentially leaving field sales representatives managing logistics instead of supporting surgeons.
The company states that “the integration of the platforms with UPS warehouse and transportation systems creates a comprehensive inventory workload planning and visibility tool.”
UPS claims that its current U.S. network of healthcare compliant facilities means that critical shipments can be delivered to 80% of hospital beds and surgery centres within four hours.
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