by John R. Fischer
, Senior Reporter | June 10, 2019
GE Healthcare has added more than 6,000 multi-vendor parts and six new functions to its online Service Shop.
Showcasing the expansion this weekend at the 2019 AAMI Exchange in Cleveland, the company is aiming to provide a greater number of available parts required by HTMs and providers, while reducing the average amount of time spent around ordering them.
“We were doing some studies which found that biomeds and procurement will spend anywhere from 45 minutes up to 90 minutes trying to source a part because they don’t know the skew,” Michelle Bougie, global digital marketing and commercial analytics leader for GE Healthcare, told HCB News. “They might have an image of it, or they might have it in hand, but it’s really hard to truly identify. The offering is really focused on connecting those dots for them to make it easier for sourcing those items.”
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In addition to GE parts, the Service Shop offers components from a variety of other vendors, including Philips, Siemens and Toshiba, making it a one-stop shop for hospitals, most of which use a mix of equipment from multiple vendors.
It is also equipped with features for search and order enhancements, including Advanced Search, in which users can type in the name, number, system ID, serial number, keywords, modality or description of a part to find it online.
In addition, users can order multiple quantities of products at the same time with Quick Order, as well as access basic equipment service documents with Basic Service Documents, and connect their procurement systems with the Service Shop through Connect.
Another added feature is auto-reorder, which schedules automatic reorders based on the frequency for which providers require a part.
“A lot of times what customers like to do is order things online, but then they've got to remember to reorder. With auto-reorder, they can say, ‘Okay, I do a PM every three months. I want to order the PM kits and make sure they’re here,’” Timothy Erickson, GM, Global Asset Returns for GE Healthcare, told HCB News. “By doing auto-reorder, they don’t have to hold the inventory. They can get it just in time. They don’t have to think about it.”
He adds that the expansion and new features reflect the rise in online shopping, with hospitals and healthcare systems in North America predicted to purchase 14.5 percent of their service parts, devices, accessories and supplies online by 2022.
“It could be a variety of things. It depends on what’s covered in contract and what’s not covered in contract. It’s the older equipment that they’re looking for parts for. It could vary anywhere from X-ray tubes to power supplies. It really does depend on the age of the equipment and what the equipment is.”
A sixth feature, Technical Service Packages will allow users to immediately request renewals of keys and access the latest technical service packages. It will be available by the end of 2019.