Provincial contract pricing at your fingertips

November 17, 2017

Imagine you’re a healthcare worker and in need of supplies. You could go online and try to find what you need yourself. But what if you could log in to a secure online platform with instant access to thousands of products used every day in healthcare facilities?

Sound compelling? The employees in Sun Country Health Region thought so. That’s why every health region employee who buys supplies now uses a procurement system called GHX Procurement Suite.

“GHX Procurement Suite helps to streamline the ordering of supplies, compared to a manual, paper-based process,” says Jill Littlemore, Manger of Finance and Purchasing in Sun Country Health Region.

The entire region completed the transition to GHX Procurement Suite in 2014. But the journey didn’t stop there.

Taking GHX to a new level

Littlemore and her team have been getting even more out of GHX over the last year after turning on an application called Round Trip.

“With this application, users browse large web-based catalogues from some of biggest vendors who have provincial contracts with the health system,” explains Littlemore. “One of those vendors is Acklands Grainger. Within the system, users can easily browse from their catalogue, add items to their GHX Procurement Suite shopping cart, and submit orders to Materials Management for processing.”

The biggest benefit is that the application shows the provincially negotiated price on each item.

This means we know we are getting the best possible price on every item we buy. If we bought supplies outside the system, we would be spending significantly more money. Over time, the money our region saves can really add up.

“The work that Sun Country did within the system is great, and we think other GHX users can really benefit from these capabilities too,” said Ashling Boyd, Segment Sales Manager with Acklands Grainger.

Pictured above (L-R): Karen Stormont, Jamie Mitchell, Ashling Boyd and Jill Littlemore in Toronto.

That’s why Jill Littlemore and a team from Acklands Grainger, including Boyd, co-presented at a national industry stakeholder conference in Toronto in October. “We wanted to promote the benefits of Round Trip to a national audience of GHX users,” explained Boyd. “Our goal was to show how customers like Sun Country can achieve cost savings and other efficiencies using the Round Trip application.”

“Our presentation with Jill was very well-received at the conference,” said Karen Stormont, National Account Business Manager with Acklands Grainger. “They talked a lot about the benefits, including time and cost savings, which can be significant. Round Trip cuts down on a lot of internal paperwork and means five people don’t have to touch the same piece of paper.

“In our particular portfolio, we have over 700,000 items and they’re constantly changing,” Stormont went on to say. “It’s very hard for people in the regions to know what the prices are, what’s new, and what’s replaced.”

But with Round Trip, customers get live contractual pricing, access to product descriptions, and product availability information. From that, they can generate a purchase order immediately. They get peace of mind knowing information is correct and up-to-date.

“After our presentation, GHX thought it would be great to deliver a webinar to other health authorities about Sun Country’s use of Round Trip,” said Boyd. “I think once other regions see what Round Trip can do, they will want it too.”

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