Four strategies applied by clinical suppliers and distributors in supporting hospitals
One can easily describe the relationship between hospitals and suppliers of medical equipment as a rocky one, with more than one-third of the hospital staff not getting the satisfaction from their primary supplier. In most cases, suppliers want to sell their products and not support other products.
When pressure is mounted on hospitals to carry out these duties, they need all the support they can get from medical equipment distributors. This will help them in service delivery and ideal patient care.
There are various areas in hospitals that require extra support for hospitals. For medical suppliers and distributors, relationship management is an excellent opportunity to differentiate between your company from other competitors. Four strategies healthcare distributors use in providing better support to hospitals include:
Offer post-sales training and 24-hour customer service
Hospitals always look for product suppliers to give them advice on the use of devices and equipment. They also provide tips on maintenance. However, some suppliers fall short on this. There’s often medical equipment with a fault, and the process of contacting someone for this may take a long while. Some don’t provide a 24-hour helpline to get the system running and serve patients better. Suppliers can give a swift response to emergencies and help run equipment for the hospital by providing support at all times.
Medical suppliers also provide training for hospitals. Medical distributors rely on their sales representatives to offer support to customers, and this affects hospitals too. Sales representatives are paid to make sales, and they channel all their efforts to this. Nonetheless, hospital staff struggle to use the equipment to the best of their functionality. Medical equipment has become more advanced, sophisticated and technical; therefore, hospital staff may experience change, with high turnover, support and training, which adds significant value.
Implement visibility strategies and reduce product shortages
With shortages in products which cost hospitals tons of cash each year and about 80 per cent of hospitals, it is often difficult to get drugs when they’re in limited supply. Therefore, the availability of these products is a significant concern. The consequences are noticeable. When hospitals run low on safety stock, this may affect patients, with potential cancellation of procedures, for lack of inventory.
Provide maintenance of equipment and repair services
Equipment maintenance is often crucial, and patient outcomes risk potential hits if equipment breaks down. Hospitals can’t take chances with valuable equipment like CT scanners and MRI. Provision of 24-hour support in getting stuff back online is an excellent initiative for business. Suppliers and distributors always have to step up their game.
They should still have the equipment and spare parts close to the hospital. With this, there’s less probability of equipment breaking down for more than 24 hours. With support from the suppliers, patients won’t be affected by the failure of equipment.
Help provide insight into new requirements and regulations
Doubts following federal rules and their effect on hospitals, likely reduction in finances and the necessity for cutting costs emphasize the importance of this support. Medical suppliers can assist in many ways. They can offer a better understanding of hospitals on how their products are developed. These products are manufactured to be stored easily and calibrated, with packaging that can protect it from potential damage – hospitals like medical suppliers who can sponsor training and collaborate easily.
Australia’s leading medical equipment suppliers can foster relationships with the hospital and gain a potential competitive advantage.