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Dec. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- At the 2013 American Society of Health System Pharmacists (ASHP) Midyear Clinical Meeting in
Orlando, one of Cardinal Health's leading hospital pharmacy experts shared best practice insight into how hospitals can leverage benchmarking and analytics tools to reduce drug costs.
Kathy Chase, Pharm. D., director of Drug Cost Control Services for Cardinal Health's Innovative Delivery Solutions business, benchmarking drug cost and other areas of hospital pharmacy performance can help hospitals reduce drug costs by 1 to 3 percent. Chase says that for the average hospital, this may represent a half a million dollars in savings each year.
At the 2013 ASHP Midyear, which took place
Dec. 8-12, in a session entitled "
Strategic Use of Benchmarks to Drive the Pharmacy Agenda," Chase shared a wide array of benchmarking best practices that can help hospitals better manage costs while improving outcomes. Just some of the best practices she discussed included:
Benchmarking against multiple sources – Use two or more benchmark criteria to help intensify your focus on key opportunities - the ones that will drive the most savings. Focus both on internal measures, like comparing your own hospital's performance year over year; and on external measures, like comparing your hospital against others in your health system.
Adjusting data to make it more meaningful – Every hospital is unique. Don't go overboard trying to find exact matches when comparing your hospital to other hospitals. Adjust data instead. Trying to find hospitals that are precise matches in size, geography, services, teaching affiliation and so on will rob you of valuable data.
Measuring costs, not charges – It is crucial to measure actual hospital-acquisition cost, not charges. Hospital charges often bear little relationship to actual drug cost.
Expanding benchmarking beyond cost – consider quality and outcomes, as this data analysis promotes improving outcomes while reducing cost.
Applying pharmacy benchmarking to the hospital's clinical decision support program – this will help you to extend analytical insights into everyday clinical practice throughout the hospital system.