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Carenet News

September 20th, 2010

September 2010 Carenet Newsletter

Carenet News

National Healthcare Industry Meeting to be held this October

National Healthcare Industry Meeting to be held October 27, Toronto, ON

Change has arrived for the Canadian healthcare supply chain, with standardization via GS1 standards and solutions set to improve efficiencies, drive interoperability and, most importantly, enhance patient safety.

National Registry for Global Location Number (GLN) Launches

Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Integration Underway in Canada

Canadian Healthcare Sector Ready for Global Supply Chain Standards

Canada Featured at the Global GS1 Healthcare Conference

New Industry-Developed Implementation Guide and Education Opportunities

Global GS1 News – GS1 Standards Continue to Support Advancements in Healthcare Sector

Member Profile: Baxter Corporation

Upcoming Healthcare Events

National Healthcare Industry Meeting to be held October 27, Toronto, ON

Change has arrived for the Canadian healthcare supply chain, with standardization via GS1 standards and solutions set to improve efficiencies, drive interoperability and, most importantly, enhance patient safety.

To prepare and assist the Canadian healthcare community as it continues to undergo the transition to global GS1 supply chain standards, the GS1 Canada Carenet Healthcare Sector Board is hosting the National Healthcare Industry Meeting – Managing the Transition to a Standardized Healthcare Supply Chain – Are You Ready?

  • When: October 27, 2010 from 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • Where: Toronto Congress Centre, Toronto, ON
  • Who: Representatives from the GS1 Canada Carenet Healthcare Sector Board, senior executives accountable for healthcare operations, and risk management from leading organizations holding positions in such functional areas as Patient Safety, Purchasing, Strategic Sourcing, e-Commerce, Operations, Logistics, and Materials Management.

Attendees will benefit from the following opportunities:

  • Hear direction from major healthcare stakeholders including regional health authorities, healthcare facilities and distributors – including David Loukras, Health Shared Services BC (HSSBC), Doris Nessim, North York General Hospital, Jitendra Prasad, Alberta Health Services, and Marty Townsend, Capital District Health Authority – who will outline their supply chain projects and discuss the importance of standards implementation for these initiatives.
  • Learn about the national strategy, including implementation timelines for standardizing Canada’s healthcare supply chain.
  • Find out how identification standards such as bar coding are being positioned to reduce medical errors in Canada.
  • Network with key healthcare trading partners and end users and participate in a roundtable Q&A with leading healthcare organizations from across Canada.

Look for more information on the speakers presenting at the National Healthcare Industry Meeting in your inbox next week!

Register today for the National Healthcare Industry Meeting. Contact events@gs1ca.org for additional details.

National Registry for Global Location Number (GLN) Launches

GLN RegistryThe healthcare sector’s nationwide effort to drive location identification consistently and accurately is now further supported by the recent launch of the GS1 Canada-managed Global Location Number (GLN) Registry.

GLNs provide healthcare trading partners with reliable, consistent information by identifying locations using a single, globally-unique 13-digit number. GLNs identifying Canadian healthcare locations can now be stored in the GLN Registry, a central, online, searchable database that ensures up-to-date, accurate and detailed location information is available to facilitate Canadian trading partner transactions.

Key Features of the GLN Registry:

  • Available online 24/7 for location information look-up.
  • Annual subscription, providing user access to all records in the database.
  • Administered on a cost-recovery basis.

The Registry is a critical resource for healthcare trading partners that are integrating the GLN standard by the industry-accepted sunrise date of December 31, 2010. Shared Service Organizations (SSOs), such as Alberta Health Services and Health Shared Services BC (HSSBC) and their trading partners, are already working with GS1 Canada to integrate the GLN standard and the GLN Registry in their daily operations. GLN assignment and integration is GS1 Canada-managed to ensure data integrity in the Registry.

For additional details, contact Rob Bell, Director, Healthcare, GS1 Canada at Rob.Bell@gs1ca.org.

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Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Integration Underway in Canada

The Canadian and U.S. healthcare sectors are transitioning to the use of GS1 Global Location Numbers (GLNs) and GS1 Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs) by the industry-established sunrise dates of December 31, 2010 and December 31, 2012, respectively. In response, a growing number of Canadian healthcare organizations have already begun integrating these and other GS1 standards into their daily operations.

To facilitate integration, GS1 Canada is collaborating with the healthcare community on the second phase of the Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Project, centered on implementation. The latter half of 2010 will see a number of Supply Chain Standards Project initiatives move forward, including:

Doing Business Electronically – Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

GS1 Canada will work with the following healthcare facilities, suppliers, and technology solution providers to further enable EDI implementation:

  • St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto
  • Cornwall Community Hospital
  • Ormed Information Systems
  • Medical Mart Supplies
  • Cardinal Health

In Phase 1 of the Supply Chain Standards Project, GS1 Canada and its established healthcare community groups developed the Canadian Healthcare EDI Implementation Guidelines and EDI transaction sets. In Phase 2 of the Project, these community groups will continue to maintain and update these newly-established guidelines and transaction sets in order to meet the needs of the Canadian healthcare system.

Item Master File Data Integrity – Data Synchronization and Product and Location Standards

Early adopters of the data synchronization interface and processes that are enabled via the Canadian Healthcare Product Registry include:

  • Central Ontario Healthcare Procurement Alliance (COHPA) SSO
  • PROcure – South Western Ontario SSO

A committee of sector representatives will also be established to drive efficiencies and provide implementation support to be gained through automation, standardization, and effective business/human resources processes for product listing and sourcing.

For more information on Phase 2 of Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Project, contact Rob Bell, Director, Healthcare, GS1 Canada at Rob.Bell@gs1ca.org.

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Canadian Healthcare Sector Ready for Global Supply Chain Standards

EScan ReportThe Canadian healthcare supply chain community has confirmed it is ready to implement global supply chain standards into its business processes, as evidenced in the results of the Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Survey, released in July 2010.

Conducted by the Innovative Research Group (INNOVATIVE) on behalf of GS1 Canada, the survey was part of Phase 1 of the Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Project, which aims to drive the adoption of consistent global supply chain standards.

The survey polled 294 Canadian healthcare sector stakeholders, representing a blend of healthcare institutions, shared services organizations and product suppliers.

An overwhelming majority of the healthcare providers (89%) and suppliers (75%) polled said they support the use of global GS1 supply chain standards to modernize Canada’s healthcare supply chain, improve patient safety, optimize supply chain processes, enable traceability, and maximize the intellectual capital of healthcare professionals across the country.

Download the complete Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Survey report.

For additional details, read the press release and hear what Canadian healthcare experts have to say about implementation of supply chain standards in Canada.

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Canada Featured at the Global GS1 Healthcare Conference

Doris NessimThe 17th annual Global GS1 Healthcare Conference, held in Geneva from June 22-24, 2010, provided an international forum to discuss the management of implementation planning for global GS1 supply chain standards in healthcare, as a key enabler for patient safety and efficiency improvements.

The conference’s theme, Raising the Bar on Patient Safety and Supply Chain Efficiency, was discussed through presentations from more than 20 healthcare industry representative and government regulators from around the globe. Among the topics covered: the latest policy and industry developments in healthcare supply chain management, automatic identification, traceability and electronic product catalogues.

Canada was represented by Doris Nessim, Director of Pharmacy Services, North York General Hospital in Toronto, Ontario, and member of the GS1 Canada Healthcare Pharmacy Board. Ms. Nessim provided a case study on current successful medication safety and e-health practices adopted at her Toronto-based hospital. These include the bar code wristband for positive patient identification, hospital-wide electronic scheduling, and electronic inter-professional documentation. Ms. Nessim also reviewed the developments of the Canadian Pharmaceutical Bar Coding Initiative, spearheaded by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices Canada (ISMP) and the Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI).

"In spite of the absence of a national mandate, Canada has a national bar code strategy, and GS1 Canada is the engine of integration," said Ms. Nessim. In alignment with the national movement, Ms. Nessim elaborated on future e-strategy expansion plans at North York General Hospital, including the introduction of Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE), a medication integration process, and Bar Code Medication Administration (BCMA).

Get more information on the Global GS1 Healthcare Conference.

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New Industry-Developed Implementation Guide and Education Opportunities

Coming Soon – Canadian Healthcare Product Description Standardization Implementation Guidelines

The GS1 Canada Healthcare Product Description Standardization Workgroup is finalizing its Canadian Healthcare Product Description Standardization Implementation Guidelines to support the healthcare community’s advancement towards supply chain standards implementation.

The guidelines are being developed to address challenges in the product identification process for clinical operations and the procurement cycle of healthcare providers, which have been identified by the healthcare community as potential barriers to realizing supply chain efficiencies and effectiveness.

Through the adoption of these guidelines, clinical, financial and operational departments within healthcare provider organizations will be enabled with the foundation to maintain accurate and standardized data in their individual databases and systems.

The Canadian Healthcare Product Description Standardization Implementation Guidelines will be available soon.

Carenet Community Update: Upcoming Workgroup Meeting Schedule

  • Tuesday, September 14, 2010 - Product Description Workgroup Meeting
  • Wednesday, September 15, 2010 - Healthcare Technical Standards Workgroup Meeting
  • Monday, September 27, 2010 - Carenet Board and Council Meeting

For more information or to join a work group, contact Rita Laur, Director, Standards, GS1 Canada, at Rita.Laur@gs1ca.org.

Coming Soon – Online Healthcare Education Module

GS1 Canada will soon be releasing a no-cost education module for the Canadian healthcare community on Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) implementation, EDI in Healthcare.

As the healthcare community moves towards integrating supply chain standards into their business processes, this module provides participants who are just beginning or furthering their EDI-implementation journey with information on healthcare-specific standards that will help organizations efficiently transfer to electronic business documents, including purchase orders, invoices and advance ship notices.

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Global GS1 News - GS1 Standards Continue to Support Advancements in Healthcare Sector

GS1 Global and International Council for Commonality in Blood Bank Automation publish Implementation Guide

GS1 and the International Council for Commonality in Blood Bank Automation (ICCBBA) have announced the publication of the Implementation Guide for Bar Coding Plasma Derivatives. The information and direction provided in this new guide will support the healthcare sector in consistent management of product identification for plasma derivatives, improving traceability and patient safety.

The ICCBBA is part of the International Society for Blood Transfusion (ISBT).

Read the press release.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Mandates Serial Number Identification (SNIs) for Drug Packaging In California

This past March, the FDA delivered its final decree on California’s track-and-trace law for prescription drugs. The law, also referred to as the e-pedigree law, requires all drug packages to contain serial number identification (SNIs) for tracking the movement of pharmaceuticals through the supply chain in order to combat counterfeit or adulterated products.

The FDA guidance states that all manufacturers, distributors, pharmacies and their vendors in California will need to have unique serial numbers on packages by January 1, 2015. The recommended identifier, SNI, is a unique combination of two numbers printed on a package label that identifies the drug inside the package.

This decision demonstrates the US government’s ongoing commitment to developing healthcare standards and showcases FDA-support for GS1 standards, with the SNI endorsing the serialization standard adopted by GS1. By using the GS1-compatible SNI, California manufacturers following the FDA guidance are very likely to comply with European, Brazilian, Norwegian and other national requirements for drug package serialization.

Read more on this topic.

GS1 and IHTSDO Join Forces to Support Safe and Efficient Patient Care

This August, the International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation (IHTSDO) and GS1 announced that they signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate and ensure compatibility between their respective standards systems, where appropriate.

The two global organizations will also work together to promote adoption, with the goal of supporting safe and efficient patient care through the use of GS1 standards and SNOWMED CT (Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine Clinical Terms).

Read the press release for more information on this initiative.

UDI System Needed for Patient Safety

The Advancing Patient Safety Coalition (APS) recently wrote to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to urge them to expedite the adoption of universal device identification (UDI) system for medical devices. The system supports both national and global needs through the GS1 System of standards.

Comprised of prominent hospital, physician, nursing, research, quality and patient advocacy organizations, the Coalition believes that the ruling on UDI will be critical to ensuring patient safety, the implementation of electronic medical records and healthcare reform.

In a letter dated July 7, the APS acknowledged the FDAs work on UDI to date, and noted the urgency for the proposed rule to be published immediately, to avoid any further delay in ensuring patient safety.

The APS strongly believes that the proposed UDI system will greatly benefit the supply chain through increased efficiencies and improved order accuracy, resulting in substantial savings. Most importantly, patients will be the ultimate beneficiaries, as providers will have access to a more efficient and accurate track-and-trace product program that will lead to improved quality, safety and affordability of care they can provide for their patients.

Get more information on the Coalition and this initiative.

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Member Profile: Baxter Corporation

Jacques Chaput and James TaaffeBaxter Corporation’s manufacturing facility in Alliston, Ontario recently celebrated 50 years in operation, and with a long history comes experience. Due to its veteran position, the facility has continuously made improvements to its operations to stay in alignment with present-day needs. As a result, they have taken a big step forward in integrating GS1 standards to realize greater supply chain efficiency and enhance the safety of their products’ end-users.

With many of its medical devices from its Sherbrooke, Quebec plant and pharmaceutical products bar coded and encoded with the Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) in Alliston, Baxter’s manufacturing facilities are steadfast in recognizing the benefits of supply chain standards they can provide its sector.

"We have relatively complex supply chains in healthcare. We’ve got manufacturers involved that sometimes ship directly to hospitals; we’ve got distributors involved; we’ve got people who run Just in Time programs involved," explains Jacques Chaput, Co-Chair, Carenet Healthcare Sector Board, and Manager of eCommerce, Supply Chain, Baxter Corporation.

Mr. Chaput notes Baxter’s own complexity and uniqueness in shipping product directly to its hospital customers, as well as using distributors for the non-hospital marketplace to reach vets, dentists, cosmetic surgery centres, and many others. "As such, there are a lot of different folks that can touch product. And up until this point, there has been a lot of proprietary identification. To link that whole supply chain from the patient to the manufacturer with a common standard for identification is huge for our industry."

Baxter Alliston, Ontario manufacturing facilityWith the cost and effort of integrating GS1 standards and solutions top of mind for many healthcare organizations as the Canadian Healthcare Supply Chain Standards Project moves into its second phase of implementation, James Taaffe, Engineering Manager, Baxter Corporation understands the manufacturer’s predicament when making the move to bar coding and standards. Taaffe points out the success other sectors have had with implementing GS1 standards, such as the grocery industry, noting that the healthcare sector is "not going down a blind alley – we’re going down a road that has been travelled by many."

"[The successful history of GS1 standards] helps a lot with that initial leap of faith and investment. It is a fairly complex process to get a bar code enabled and printed on something...and manufacturers aren’t going to invest in the technology unless the customer wants it," Taaffe says, who has led the Alliston facility’s foray into bar coding and met with such challenges as printing bar codes directly on clear IV bags, which go through intense sterilization processes that would ruin a paper bar code. More than that, as this product is comprised of a clear bag and clear liquid, it has also been a challenge to find a universally readable bar code for Baxter’s IV bags due to the variety of scanners currently used.

To meet the needs of its customers and ensure that its clear IV bags are bar coded, Taaffe is currently investigating various methods to enable the bar code to be printed directly on the clear bag, while also ensuring that it can be identified with the GTIN and reliably scanned at a patient’s bedside.

Despite the potential challenges that need to be overcome to bar code healthcare products, Taaffe maintains the importance of identification and says that "one of the most compelling arguments for bar coding [is that] the GTIN goes to the 5 Rights [right person, medicine, dose, time and method]."

Both Taaffe and Chaput are confident that mass adoption of the GTIN is not far away, with the industry-driven sunrise date to integrate the GTIN in the healthcare sector set for December 2012.

"[With the GTIN], we are investing in patient safety," Chaput says. "This is not a purely financial exercise. At the end of the day, it could be someone’s life. And that has to make you feel good."

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Upcoming Healthcare Events

National Healthcare Industry Meeting
Toronto Congress Centre, Toronto, ON
Presented by: GS1 Canada
October 27, 2010, 8:30AM – 12:00PM

HealthAchieve 2010
Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto, ON
Presented by: Ontario Health Association (OHA)
November 8 –10, 2010

GS1 Healthcare Conference Autumn 2010
Singapore, Singapore
Presented by: GS1
November 9 –11, 2010

National Healthcare Supply Chain Network Conference 2011
Doubletree Airport Hotel, Toronto, ON
Presented by: Healthcare Supply Chain Network (HSCN)
May 8 –10, 2011

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