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Administrators across hospital or healthcare system functions all share responsibility for enforcing compliance. Regulations not only help each organization create a safe environment, but also help to secure vital funding. The stakes are high, and vendor credentialing in supply chain is no exception to the rule. Noncompliance in the form of employing or contracting with excluded individuals risks loss of access to federal and state healthcare funding programs and exposure to civil monetary penalties.
Vendor credentialing is the process hospital administrators go through of vetting third-party suppliers and sales reps before purchasing items or services from them. It’s a key part of an administrator’s responsibility to ensure that rules and regulations are maintained, both for the protection of patients and a hospital’s resources. Vendor credentialing is typically managed by the organization’s supply chain department, and is driven by directors of supply chain or materials management. However, administrators of vendor credentialing can include many people within a facility - basically anyone responsible for managing access to the facility or maintaining relationships with vendors.
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Chain-of-custody security is the forgotten champion of effective credentialing We often hear about all the ways IT departments secure their data: with encryption, tokenization and vaults in both physical and virtual environments. Most people visualize these methods when they think of any data security.
Supply chain management in healthcare has evolved from straightforward purchasing into a profession where cost, quality, and safety intersect to form a complicated framework of responsibilities. As the healthcare industry has grown, so too has the area of responsibility for the supply chain manager.
Managing a hospital’s supply chain involves a whole lot more than ordering supplies. It encompasses managing the relationship with every entity that sells to you or has a material influence on your organization.
A comprehensive vendor credentialing program can be a hospital or healthcare organization’s best defense against potential liability and litigation, while ensuring quality control and cost-containment. Unfortunately for the healthcare supply chain, trying to tie together all the elements of compliance can feel like an unending, time-consuming cycle of paperwork and frustration. We have found that a highly-organized system is the best approach.