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2015 AHVAP Annual Conference and Vendor Showcase Highlights

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Conference Subcommittee has been working hard to finalize the schedule for the upcoming conference.  We think we have hit on a winning line up of fabulous and engaging presenters.  We will highlight our speakers in the upcoming newsletters starting with this one. 

Back by popular demand Dr. Jimmy Chung will be our keynote speaker on Wednesday morning.  He will kick off the day sharing information on physician engagement and developing physician leadership roles within Value Analysis and Supply Chain.  Everyone enjoyed Dr. Chung’s presentation last year as he provided  insights into the physician/surgeons’ view of supply chain and how to integrate them into value analysis programs.  This year he will take it to the next step and talk about best practice models as Value Analysis evolves towards full integrated outcome driven, patient-centric processes.

We will close the conference on Friday with the very funny and delightful nurse humorist, Terry M. Foster.  He is an emergency nurse who has spoken all over the country sharing his special brand of humor that will enlighten, inspire and revitalize you.   You will be rolling on the floor and smiling all the way home after his presentation.  We are very excited he can join us and we promise you will not be disappointed.   You will not want to miss this presentation. 

We promise a conference experience like no other.  You will learn something new, you will be entertained, you will make new friends, you will be renewed. 

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The Case Against Value Analysis Committees

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, July 15, 2015

By Hani N. Elias, JD, MPH Chief Executive Officer, Procured Health

Hospitals and IDNs who are serious about optimizing costs associated with medical products and supplies often see the establishment of physician-led value analysis committees (VACs) as a fundamental requirement. These committees are aimed at addressing two common barriers to reducing wasteful spending: lack of physician engagement and objective decision making criteria. VACs are considered an effective medium for aligning physicians to undertake value-maximizing initiatives, such as rationalizing vendors or establishing utilization guidelines for premium-priced products. VACs vary by hospital on three main dimensions: the type of products reviewed (e.g. single committee vs. category-specific committees, new technology vs. existing spend), participants (e.g. physicians, administrators, etc.), and degree of centralization (e.g. facility, division, or system level). While the structure and success of VACs varies, we have observed three common shortcomings:

  • It is difficult to recruit engaged physicians: While there are physicians at every hospital who are passionate about reducing wasteful spending on medical products and technology, health systems often have a difficult time recruiting a full committee of engaged physicians. The challenge multiples when hospitals establish category-specific committees or when IDNs establish committees at the facility level. 
  • The focus on products could overshadow more impactful waste-reducing strategies: Achieving the highest quality care at the lowest cost requires optimization of several variables. VACs that zoom in on the product-related variable might be missing out on a bigger opportunity that lies elsewhere, such as aligning physicians around a practice guideline to reduce infection rates, improving operational efficiency in the OR, or expanding a service line. 
  • Despite the best intentions, VAC agendas are dominated by new product requests: While the primary objective for establishing a VAC was to optimize spend, the VAC agenda is often dominated by the review of new product requests. Rigorously analyzing new product requests is certainly necessary to ensure your hospital is not wasting resources on a product that doesn't yield benefit, but unlocking savings requires a concerted effort at reviewing existing spend. The typical  VAC is a multi-specialty committee, with each major specialty being represented by one physician. While approving or rejecting a new product can be handled by such a group, changing ingrained behavior requires far broader physician engagement.

Rather than creating a new VAC structure, a growing number of health systems, including Academic Medical Centers, for-profit IDNs, and not-for-profit systems, are including supply spend review as part of a broader agenda to optimize care delivery.  This approach addresses the inherent challenges of the VAC structure.
As discussed in HFMA's recently published e-book on "Strategies for Supply Chain Success," Saint Luke's Health System, a 10-facility IDN serving the Kansas City, MO region, supply chain teamed up with Saint Luke's Care, a volunteer physician quality organization to tackle several high cost categories, such as orthopedics. Saint Luke's Care had established "Evidence-Based Practice Teams" to investigate quality improvement opportunities, implement system-wide care pathways, and define order sets. They applied the processes and methodology of those committees to investigate supply spend. Organizations that don't have something analogous to Saint Luke's Care could look to their service line committees as a natural home for supply spend related topics. 

Service line committees are tasked with optimizing clinical outcomes and financial performance. As with supply cost optimization, physician engagement is required to make progress toward these goals. Rather than recruiting a separate group of physicians for a Value Analysis Committee, hospitals can leverage the existing structure and team. Our experience suggests that it's easier to recruit physicians if the mandate of the committee expands beyond products (especially new products). Additionally, the service line structure allows hospitals and physicians to prioritize more effectively. Clinicians are being asked to change several aspects about the way they practice and the service line structure encourages focus on the initiatives that will drive the greatest impact.

Under this model, supply chain plays a primary role in identifying optimization opportunities. Supply chain staff must continually monitor the vendor and product landscape, utilization patterns, and emerging evidence related to product use in order to contribute new ideas. The service line team also relies on supply chain for their product expertise when evaluating the viability of new services, vetting solutions for quality issues, or addressing suboptimal operations. By doing away with VACs, supply chain becomes integrated into the heartbeat of clinical delivery optimization. 

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Wall of Experience – A Call for the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Susan D. Knapp, RN, MS

We have renamed the Wall of Success tradition at our Annual Conference to the Wall of Experience.  We want you to share with us your stories about successful and unsuccessful conversions, negotiations, improvements, etc. These short tantalizing tidbits have been well received at past conferences and people often walk away having learned a little something new.   Everyone has these stories and the Wall of Experience template makes it very easy and effortless to submit. 
The instructions and template have a link on the Annual Conference homepage, .  The template is one powerpoint slide and will be printed off for the conference on 8.5” x 11” paper. Only one slide per initiative will be accepted.  And yes, you can submit more than one initiative.  This is open to anyone attending the conference.  Attendees will vote on their favorite and prizes will be given to the top three posters. 
Not sure what to do?  The instructions have some suggestions such as product conversion, standardization, safety initiative, practice, utilization, waste.   You can do anything that pertains to a value analysis project.  Big or small, spectacular success or dazzling failure – it doesn’t matter.  Someone will learn something from it and that is what it is all about. 

Please submit a ‘poster’ to the Wall of Experience.  This is a challenge to you.  You all have so much knowledge and insight.  Please share it with your peers.  Submissions are due by September 1st.  If you have questions or suggestions, contact me at .

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Every month, we’re featuring a new member. This month’s featured member is Jeffiny Shutts.

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Every month, we’re featuring a new member. This month’s featured member is Jeffiny Shutts.

Tags:  ahvap  Jeffiny shutts  monthly  new member 

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What’s the fuss about? Understanding HAC’s and their role within our organization

Posted By Administration, Monday, June 22, 2015

by Laura Polson, RN, BSN- CQVA Facilitator

Hospital Acquired Conditions (HAC) have long been one of Healthcare’s major concerns. So what has changed? What’s all the fuss about?

Increased transparency of information which had previously been held from public view has driven renewed efforts to improve safety and reduce hospital acquired infection (HAI) rates. Government and employers (such as The Leapfrog Group) have posted outcomes by facility and clinician, much to their chagrin and more amazingly, their surprise. Data tracked and shared only in committee, hidden from staff and treated as the skeleton in our closets is now driving an amazing transformation long overdue.

This renewed focus on quality, driven in part by public outcry, has caught its second wind based largely on reimbursement cuts. The government Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) measures and HCAHPS patient satisfaction surveys hope to prove the old adage that poor quality care is very expensive. In that regard, quality outcomes across the nation have seen some dramatic improvements and all the while our consumers are growing savvier.

Major news media coverage of antibiotic resistant strains, devices carrying transmissible diseases, and potential epidemic threats has also forced us to readdress past policies and procedures including our chosen supply resources.

Value Analysis Professionals (VAP) are a critical pivot point to the spokes of this giant wheel we call Healthcare. It is through the integration of the Infection Control, Quality Assurance, Risk Management, IT, Administration (and others) along with clinical expertise and evidence based practices through which Supply Chain utilization can provide the resources and infrastructure to coordinate all other silo efforts.

Can you share a recent experience you’ve had at your facility or network where you had to coordinate a practice and/or supply chain conversion to address some of the latest HAC issues? Email your answer to: and we’ll publish in the next newsletter.

Tags:  antibiotic resistant strains  HAC  HAI rates  helathcare  quality care  safety  transparency  Value Analysis Professionals  VAP 

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Utilizing Evidenced Based Processes

Posted By Administration, Thursday, March 19, 2015

What a great learning and networking experience today, attending the Q1 2015 Quarterly Webinar presented by Dr. Terry Loftus and Barbara Campbell of Banner Health!

AHVAP members learned about Banner Health's value analysis process, how they measure success and received hands on ideas from Banner's successful endeavors. To view the webinar deck visit and enter your log-in information.

Don't forget to mark your calendars for the Q2 Webinar June 11 at 2p Central time, hosted by the Southeast Region and coordinated by Regional Director Sonja Glass.

"Supply Chain Partners? Holding Vendors Accountable for Product Claims. Using Quantifiable Data to Validate Product Claims," will be presented by Wanda Dupree-Lane, Value Analysis at Regional Health One. It promises to be another great opportunity to learn and network!

Tags:  banner health  measure success  members  quarterly webinar  value analysis process 

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Do Your Surgeons Know the Price of Their Products?

Posted By Administration, Monday, February 2, 2015

by:  Sonja L. Glass, RN, BSN -Value Analysis Facilitator for Surgical Services Wake Forest Baptist Health

There was interest at our institution from Administration and Surgical Faculty to provide supply cost per procedure.  The hypothesis was that if we educated our Faculty on the price of products at the line item level that it would change practice.

As a result of this interest a “Surgical Case Cost Tracker” was internally developed by our Director of Supply Chain. This report is generated weekly for each surgeon and shows a summary of all of their cases for the previous week. 

The report provides case overviews related to details of the case number, date, OR suite, OR room, and the primary procedure name as well as the in-room time, OR time cost, and average time of all the Surgeons that perform cases including their total supply cost.  The cost shown is true to the unit level and all surgeons understand that pricing presented is confidential to our institution.

There has been a tremendous amount of positive feedback from our Faculty!  It is apparent our Surgeons are reviewing reports closely as there are many suggestions and comments such as “this product should be removed from my pick list, I didn’t realize that this product was that expensive, could you find a less costly alternative, had I known this product was this expensive I wouldn’t have used it, and I see we are using two different brands of these products therefore, can we get rid of the more expensive one and use only the more cost efficient product.”  When questions are raised, the Director will address or forward the information to Value Analysis Facilitator or other team members to research, answer, and address the concerns.

Writing the program was complex and initially there were some UOM issues such as a box of product instead of an each unit was reported.   Generating and sending the reports daily was initially very time consuming, but the current process of sending weekly summaries is more manageable.

End result, our surgeons are more engaged in the product selection and there is a new awareness of the importance of case cost.  Eventually our reports will share the per case cost of their colleagues that perform the same procedure.

Tags:  ahvap  AHVAP Conference  cost  health care  Healthcare  hospital  Hospitals  interprofessional sharing  Leading Practice of Value Analysis  Leading Practice of Value Analysis Health care int  materials management  Protocol  quality  quality patient care  Supply Chain  supply chain management  Surgical Services  value analysis  value analysis certification  Value Analysis Coordinator  value analysis professionals 

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Posted By Administration, Monday, December 15, 2014

Submitted By:  Cheri Berri-Lesh, Group Health Cooperative

How exciting is this?   AHVAP continues to participate in the Strategic Market Place Initiative work on standard RFI’s and Value Analysis best practices.  Mary Beth Potter, Cheri Berri Lesh and Dee Donatelli are active in both groups along side industry partners and suppliers.

Dee Donatelli and Mary Beth Lang presented a collaboration of work from AHVAP and SMI at a breakout session at the October SMI Conference where feedback was shared and discussed.

The work will continue well into 2015 so keep an eye out for this information as it will be shared with AHVAP members and the board before finalization.


Tags:  AHVAP Conference  cost  Healthcare  hospital  interprofessional sharing  Leading Practice of Value Analysis  materials management  Protocol  quality  quality patient care  Supply Chain  Surgical Services  value analysis certification  Value Analysis Coordinator  value analysis professionals 

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Posted By Administration, Friday, October 24, 2014

By:  Susan A. Toomey, CMRP Value Analysis Coordinator 

What an exciting AHVAP Conference (Oct. 15-17) in Tampa, FL this year. The Value Analysis attendees received excellent key information revolving around the collaboration and pathway to success of Value Analysis.  Many great speakers included Wini Hayes, Dr. Jimmy Chung, Kathy Chauvin, Michael Neely,Barbara Strain, Courtney Bohman, Kevin Valis, Wanda Lane and to top it if off with Future Best Practices In Value Analysis by Dennis Orthman, Mary Potter & Cheri Berri Lesh.  In addition, the AHVAP conference sponsors have expanded,   collaborated with AHVAP attendees, and have changed the traditional vendor business relationships into valuable sponsor partnerships.   

If you didn't get the opportunity to attend the 2014 AHVAP Conference, please plan on attending the AHVAP Conference next year as AHVAP does an awesome job in providing education, networking, and standardization opportunities to increase the "Value" of the Value Analysis Professional!   

Tags:  ahvap  AHVAP Conference  alue analysis  alue analysis certification  alue analysis professionals  aterials Management  Barbara Strain  cost  eading Practice of Value Analysis  ealth care  ealthcare interprofessional  HAI  haring  health care  Healthcare  hospital  Hospital Acquired Infections  Hospitals  HVAP Conference  implants  interprofessional sharing  Leading Practice of Value Analysis  Leading Practice of Value Analysis Health care int  materials management  ost  owens and minor  Practice  Protocol  quality  quality patient care  recalls  resources  rotocol  Supply Chain  supply chain management  Surgical Services  uality  uality patient care  upply Chain  value analysis  Value Analysis Coordinator  value analysis professionals  Welcome 

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Posted By Administration, Monday, October 6, 2014

By: Julie Ware RN, BSN, CMRP- Implementation Manager


Each October, our nation’s healthcare industry recognizes healthcare supply chain professionals for their outstanding contributions to healthcare and the supply chain process.  This year, October 5 – 11 is National Healthcare Supply Chain Week and AHRMM, our collaborative partner, has chosen “Healthcare Supply Chain:  Integration Through Collaboration” as the celebration theme.   In most organizations, value analysis resides within the supply chain department and so many value analysis professionals will celebrate along with colleagues.


As I think about what we do every day in our world of value analysis and how we collaborate and connect with others, I really just want to say THANK YOU. I want to help honor you as our profession celebrates along with other supply chain professionals during National Healthcare Supply Chain Week. We have had another incredibly amazing year in healthcare supply chain and in AHVAP! The contributions you have made in your organizations through your value analysis processes are astounding.  Astounding, and yet humbling when you think about what it really means:  the impact you have made in the lives of people!  People, patients – those who come to your organization most often not out of choice.  I hope you feel appreciated for the very important role you play in their lives and in the delivery of high-quality, financially prudent patient care! 


I believe the ongoing changes in healthcare will provide us an even larger platform to “own” and collaborate with others in leading the redesign and efforts to improve patient health and organizational clinical and financial performance.  So our work never ends…. the journey continues. 


But for this week, for this month, smile a little bigger, stand a little taller, and KNOW you are making a difference TODAY in our world! 

Tags:  ahvap  AHVAP Conference  cost  health care  Healthcare  hospital  interprofessional sharing  Leading Practice of Value Analysis  materials management  Protocol  quality  quality patient care  Supply Chain  Surgical Services  value analysis  value analysis certification  Value Analysis Coordinator  value analysis professionals 

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