One of the little-known facts about value analysis is that it was initially designed for the purpose of searching or sourcing equal or better materials due to critical shortages in our domestic and military establishment supply chain during World War II. Well, here we are again with shortages in our supply chain due to the coronavirus pandemic, and value analysis (functional analysis) can help with your sourcing.
The Search for Functional Equivalents
Healthcare organizations like Baptist Health (Jacksonville, Florida) are reprocessing their N95 masks with a Pulsed Xenon Ultraviolet (PXU) robot vs. buying new N95 masks; Baptist Health is practicing value analysis.
According to a White Paper recently published by Baptist Health, the PXU robots deactivate pathogens in masks including coronavirus as well as other viruses and bacteria. Meaning, the PXU robot mask reprocessing provides an equal or better functional (i.e., protect patient and clinicians from pathogens) equivalent as does buying a new N95 mask. In fact, Baptist Health has documented that they can reprocess an N95 mask three to six times without deterioration of the mask.
I’m sure you heard that hospitals nation-wide are converting some of their anesthesia equipment to function as ventilators. Thus, enabling these hospitals to increase their ventilator stock. This too was a value analysis decision, even if these hospitals didn’t realize they were performing value analysis when they were making this decision.
Search for Alternatives When Sourcing Supply Shortages
You, too, can perform value analysis on any product, service, or technology that your healthcare organization is now experiencing shortages of, as opposed to trying to find the exact product, service, or technology in scarce supply. Remember to think about what function you are trying to meet rather than only focusing on where you can find a specific product, service, or technology in short supply. This thinking could be a game changer for you, just like the value analysis example above.
Below are some similar articles that you may find interesting.