Need a “Booster Shot” for your Hospital’s Supply Chain Data and Analytics?

As healthcare data management evolved from paper to electronic workflows into complex, integrated software systems, hospital supply chain teams, have always been responsible for maintaining an “Item Master” of medical and non-medical products they order and use. That hasn’t been an easy task. Without a centralized source of medical catalog information for supply chain staff to reference, an entire industry of consultants, data and analytics companies, Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs), government branches, and hospital systems has emerged. It has created endless and expensive dependencies on supplemental data, analytics, and other related services.


What was the government’s solution to this data gap? In 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) mandated the establishment of a unique identification system known as the Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID), with a specific timeline for publication of all implantable, life-supporting, or life-sustaining devices and their key attributes. Under the U.S. National Library of Medicine, you can now access GUDID and beneficial tools at


Unfortunately, the excitement of this extensive database full of medical catalog information fell off a cliff about five years ago due to many deadline extensions. Today, I’m thrilled to say that it’s now ready for prime time! The GUDID resource has finally hit a critical mass of products, some 3.1 million, making it profoundly useful for supply chain workers, clinicians, ERP/EMR management, and others involved in cost cycle functionality. Before we look forward, it’s important to look at why GUDID was created and how it can be a differentiator for your hospital or health system.


The Impetus Behind GUDID


Without going into too much detail, GUDID was developed to drive supply chain efficiencies, safety, and eventually, more cost-effective reimbursements using Unique Device Identification (UDI) such as Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) and Health Industry Business Communications Council (HIBCC) codes — the building blocks of barcodes. The system follows devices sold in the U.S. from creation to sale to application.


GUDID was intended to eliminate the industry confusion of miss-keyed or redundant medical product part numbers by establishing and regulating a consistent UDI database. To date, most of the focus has been on securing medical suppliers’ participation...and propelling them to meet data standards. Now, it’s time to get hospitals and health systems up to speed on the database and learn to leverage its valuable information.


Jump on Board — or Lose Your Edge


While GUDID provides numerous benefits throughout a cost cycle process, its data offers the most significant boost to healthcare facilities by enhancing the way patient procedure products are captured, reimbursed, and even scrutinized through analytics. It’s filling a long-standing “black hole” of information that has remained elusive to hospitals and health systems, despite item master management, trunk stock invoice analysis, and attempts to use artificial intelligence (AI) to clean up procedure logs.


This database is also poised to transform your business operations, helping you gain greater efficiencies and more easily meet regulatory requirements. Hospitals that do not adopt GUDID and incorporate this information into their processes will eventually yield their competitive advantage to those that do. If your hospital or health system wants to get to the bottom of its hidden spending, do it now by incorporating GUDID with an enhanced process to capture procedure products.


There’s a Reason GUDID is Pronounced “Good ID”


At Impensa, we’re seeing our clients match an average of 70 percent of their item masters to GUDID.  Even better, more than 90 percent of their procedure area spend can be linked to the rich information within this FDA database.


The GUDID website provides multiple options for downloading the database and remaining current with weekly or monthly updates. We strongly believe that the benefits and efficiencies gained by any hospital or health facility far outweigh the efforts to get started with GUDID. It’s time to factor an integration plan and appropriate resources into your short-term roadmap.


If you’re unsure where to start, reach out to IMPENSA® for a free data assessment of your supply chain and cost cycle processes. We know a bit about the importance of accurate data, thanks to our healthcare subscription catalog of 6 million-plus medical and non-medical products — and offer cutting-edge technology to help you link your data management to the FDA’s GUDID. So don’t delay that supply chain “booster shot” any longer!

Share :

Popular Blog Posts