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The Pros and Cons of Working with a Medical Equipment Distributor vs. Multiple Vendors

By Cindy Juhas | July 17, 2014

As a healthcare facility you need to lower costs in order to provide better quality care to your patients. Cutting corners on the level of care you provide is not an option, therefore it is necessary to find ways to cut costs where you will see the least impact on your patients and team. Working with a medical distributor can often be an effective way of saving money as it offers a number of advantages over working with multiple vendors. Here is a pros and cons overview that outlines the benefits of working with a medical distributor.

Cons of Multiple Vendor Ordering Process

As you know when ordering from multiple vendors you are faced with a number of issues including:

  • An endless number of PO's required to press the orders through your system
  • Several deliveries received requiring monitoring, accuracy checks and damage control checks
  • Assembly, installation and training arrangements for new equipment
  • Several deliveries arriving in a central location requiring more staff and more time to get them to the proper departments
  • Paying direct to vendor prices which are higher as you are buying in smaller quantities

In a nutshell, when dealing with multiple vendors ordering, you will require more staff and more time to make your purchases. Sometimes it involves numerous staff members across many different departments with each department cutting their own PO's, making their own calls but not necessarily taking their own deliveries.  

This can result in confusion when deliveries are arriving on different schedules with little to no quality control and often a receptionist or receiving department signing for items without checking orders for accuracy and damages.  You will also see more waste due to lost deliveries that never manage to make their way to the correct department.

All of these issues work together to cost your facility more money in staffing, the cost of orders themselves and in costly errors when deliveries get lost in the shuffle from receiving to the correct department.

Pros of a Medical equipment Distributor 

When electing to deal with a medical distributor you will instantly lessen the burden on your staff, streamline the PO and ordering system and significantly reduce the possibility of lost or damaged goods.  The pros of working with a medical distributor include:

  • Fewer PO's are required for each department for a reduction in the cost of administration

  • A condensed number of deliveries will arrive from one central distribution center managed by the medical distributor for further reduction in administration costs

  • Direct to room deliveries will reduce the potential for losses as well as damages as the packages will be received and checked by the right staff members

  • You may receive the best possible pricing possibly even lower than that enjoyed through direct to consumer pricing agreements

  • A streamlined ordering and delivery process that packages related orders by department to reduce loss and simplify receiving procedures

  • Eliminates offsite storage fees and lessens the amount of touches per order reducing the amount of human error

  • Reduced shipping and handling fees due to a reduced number of deliveries and long distance deliveries

  • On-site training and demos set up prior to delivery

  • A single point of contact to once again reduce administrative costs and effort

  • Your staff are freed up to attend to patient care and more important administrative duties as required

As you can see, the time and cost savings work hand-in-hand to reduce costs and lessen the administrative burden placed on your staff.  It also allows for streamlined delivery so you always receive your goods and equipment on time without losses or damage.

Using a distributor that specializes in equipment procurement and deliveries can assist you in successfully fulfilling many of these functions. At CME, we specialize in the logistics of medical equipment procurement and delivery to healthcare facilities.  

We want to be considered as part of your upstream supply chain management team, particularly when it comes to securing and installing equipment for your new construction and expansion or remodeling projects. Our unique order tracking, warehousing, inspection, and assembly of equipment, plus our direct-to-site delivery program sets us apart as a valuable part of your supply chain system.

About CME: CME Corp is the nation’s premier source for healthcare equipment, turnkey logistics, and biomedical services, representing 2 million+ products from more than 2,000 manufacturers.

With two corporate offices and 35+ service centers, our mission is to help healthcare facilities nationwide reduce the cost of the equipment they purchase, make their equipment specification, delivery, installation, and maintenance processes more efficient, and help them seamlessly launch, renovate and expand on schedule.

Capital Medical Equipment

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