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New Post 11/23/2009 8:23 PM
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Helping Independent Owners: Pharmacy Technology Software Vendor Mandate! 
Modified By PTR27  on 11/23/2009 8:23:37 PM)
This year’s Annual ASCP Meeting was held in the pleasant setting within Anaheim’s Convention Center. In ASCP President Judith Beizer’s message in the meeting’s program she mentions a focus on technology to help long-term care pharmacies improve their businesses.

There were several dedicated times set aside to touch on technology for LTCP operations including the Thursday November 19th at Busienss Forum Meeting titled: What Long-Term Care Pharmacies Need to Know About Selecting Health Information Technology.

Pharmacy Technology Resource and StongCord have committed to LTCP owners and business leaders to support and drive the industry’s first “Mandate to Technology Vendors”.

Lee Meyer with Golden Living, Lynn Shipp with Strategic Healthcare Partners, Robert Miller past ASCP President, Ross Brickley with CCRx, Tom Smith with Geritom Medical, and Shelly Spiro – oncoming 2010 ASCP President were all in attendance. These are just a few of the leaders in this industry – that could confirm and attest to the positive effect a guarantee provided by pharmacy software management and technology vendors could positively impact the profitability of independent long-term care pharmacies.

Generally there are several key anxiety points around any technology selection. There might be multiple choices of one particular technology or software which purport to be the “Right Choice”. There are many technology vendors who claim to have the “silver bullet” or the one – technology solution that could change everything!

Questions posed: What about cost of selection? What effects are there in a particular selection? The purchase of the technology is one aspect of over cost – but what about implementation, proactive customer-centric support, and ongoing management of your choices? What about your own organizational adoption (or not) of the new system(s)? [How about the anticipation of failed expectations and the inevitable self-posed question, “Now what?”]

Business Goals Supported by Technology: Don’t start with the technology or software suggested. Does the vendor in consideration have a understanding, foggy view, or maybe no view at all of your business strategy and their technology alignment for 1, 3, and 5 years out?

What is your business goal?

What are you attempting to achieve for your business? Remember you need a strategy first.

Strategy focuses. People that depend on Process. Enabled by Technology. (In that order.)

What business challenges/problems is the contemplated technology intended to resolve?
Can you measure it?

What are the Have-to-Haves vs. the Nice-to-Haves when it comes to technology in your business?

Will the vendor guarantee the results or credit you when the technology doesn’t perform to the standards purported in the sales process?

Pharmacy Technology Vendor Mandate Proposal: Every Vendor promoting products and services to the LTC Pharmacy should share the risk of technology cost and performance with the Pharmacy Owner/Operator in the form of performance-based credits to the Pharmacy. This could be broken into three categories.

Customer Support: Effective or not effective every time you call on a specific issue tracked by a “ticket” or “problem/ issue log”

Software / Technology – performance: Does it do all it was presented to do while in the presentation or demo? Does it work properly? Is the software and or technology keeping your pharmacy from being productive and or profitable? Are bug fixes / identified problems not being corrected month after month?

Customer Software & Interfaces: Between vendors – are there integrated pieces of software? If these integrations don’t work – is there a “blame game” and is the issues unresolved?

This mandate is a concept that is not new in other industries. Will the vendor’s in the LTCP space commit to “FUNCTIONAL INTEGRITY?”

Feedback Requested: We need to hear from Technology / Software Vendors & LTC Pharmacy Owners and Operators. We can change the playing field for Independent LTC Pharmacy operations and help improve productivity and profitability – however – we need your support.

Please send us your thoughts and feedback to help create the foundation of this mandate. Please send us an email to:
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