Health shared services saves system millions

November 24, 2016

Quality improvement = savings

REGINA – Ever-increasing quality at an ever-decreasing price: this is the benefit a health shared service organization brings to the province.

Since it was established in 2010, 3sHealth (Health Shared Services Saskatchewan) has supported its partners – health regions and the cancer agency – to achieve a cumulative savings of more than $244 million as of October 2016; this is an increase from $191 million in savings achieved by the end of the 2015-16 fiscal year. For more information on the cumulative savings, please click here.

The bulk of savings is the result of the collective buying power of the health system in reducing prices for health regions and the cancer agency. Everything from paper and cleaning products to medications and surgical equipment are now being purchased off shared contracts for, in most cases, lower costs.

Health shared services is a great example of what can be achieved when we work together toward better care, better health, better value and better teams, says Health Minister Jim Reiter.

“To be able to achieve improved quality and safety for patients and, at the same time, point to significantly reduced spending in the health sector is good for everyone – especially the patient receiving that care.

“The collective work of all involved in health shared services is truly saving lives through initiatives like the SMART IV pump implementation.”

The health system introduced more than 3,000 Hospira Plum 360 SMART IV pumps across the province since January. SMART IV pumps have innovative technology that provides an additional layer of protection for patients by reducing the risk of IV drug errors and patient harm. The pump alerts the nurse or interrupts the infusion process when a pump setting is programmed outside pre-defined safe dosing limits.

The experience in working together within the provincial health system has demonstrated that it is possible to improve quality and reduce costs at the same time, says 3sHealth CEO Andrew Will.

“The introduction of SMART IV pumps is saving lives – it is considered to be one of the most important patient safety initiatives we’ve ever introduced in this province,” he says. “At the same time, we have negotiated a unique seven-year contract that is saving $19 million over the lifetime of the contract including a signing bonus, capital cost avoidance, and reduced annual consumable costs.”

Another important shared services initiative is the implementation of a new provincial healthcare linen service which will save the health care system $98 million over 10 years; this figure has been adjusted from previously projected savings based on a year of provincial linen operations.

3sHealth provides province-wide shared services to support Saskatchewan’s healthcare system. Together with its partners, 3sHealth finds innovative solutions to complex problems to help create a sustainable system for future generations. The shared services 3sHealth provides include payroll processing and employee benefits administration for more than 42,000 healthcare system employees, as well as joint contracting for goods and services.


Media contact:

Janine Sakatch
Director, Communications & Stakeholder Relations, 3sHealth

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