Supply investment a priority for healthcare executives

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Healthcare executives are investing in their supply chains to increase their competitiveness, according to the 2011 UPS “Pain in the (Supply) Chain” survey.

The survey found that technology investments ranked as the No 1 strategy, with 86 per cent of respondents reporting that they would invest in new technologies over the next three to five years.

“Tapping into new global markets was the second top strategy for increasing competitiveness, with 81 per cent of respondents reporting plans to expand in new areas in the next three to five years.”

Bill Hook, vice president, global strategy at UPS Healthcare Logistics, said:  “Going forward, companies have to find new ways to innovate and adapt to rapid market changes and this is where the supply chain plays a pivotal role.”

The survey found that the key business concern for healthcare executives globally is change in healthcare legislation/reform, cited by 52 per cent of respondents, followed by increasing regulations at 48 per cent.

With extended supply chains due to globalisation and the introduction of more specialized products into the marketplace, concerns over regulatory compliance, product integrity and security all remain at the top of supply chain concerns again this year.

Regulatory compliance is the No. 1 supply chain concern cited by 73 per cent of respondents. Product security was cited as a concern by 61 per cent and product damage / spoilage by 56 per cent. Managing supply chain costs came in second overall, with 64 per cent of healthcare executives rating this as a top supply chain concern.

“Comparing year-over-year trends, companies remain highly concerned about the issue of supply chain cost management but report limited success in addressing this issue. Only 42 per cent of global executives surveyed in 2011 reported success in supply chain cost management. In the US, however, companies appear to be getting better at cost management, with 53 per cent of US executives reporting success in this area in 2011 versus 44 per cent in 2010,” it said.

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