Pharmaceutical manufacturers, like all companies, are seeing the need to eliminate costs and make funds go further especially with the demands for research and development dollars. Bottom line, they need to streamline and one of best places to use smart practices for savings is the reverse supply chain.
The elimination of touch points and redundant processing are the first steps to a more cost effective supply chain. The traditional process for pharmaceutical returns is a two-count process where the retailer or wholesaler counts and produces invoices for product that is transported to the manufacturer for recount and payment. Pharmacies, hospitals and wholesalers need a single source, single scan, one touch solution that meets the needs of all trading partners that positions each party to cut costs, promote fast, accurate financial reconciliation and share data for reporting and trend analysis. The one touch model creates a system where the retailer and manufacturer accept the first count and reduces a touch point, expedites credit, lessens carbon footprint and eliminates count discrepancies.
An Inmar study for a major pharmaceutical manufacturer calculated significant cost savings using Inmar’s One Touch Advantage® solution. By using the solution to analyze root cause of returns and sort them by National Drug Code, returns were reduced by more than $2 million in three years. Product identification accuracy and discrepancy reduction added another $800,000 in savings more than offsetting the cost of the program.
Manufacturers using Inmar’s One Touch solution also showed significant decreases in carbon footprint by reducing energy, cardboard usage and emissions. When processing 2,250,000 one touch units annually, the study showed a decrease of 450 kWh (approximately $58,500). The decrease in cardboard was 64.300 boxes annually or 257 trees. Finally, the reduction of greenhouse gases was the equivalent of 31.8 passenger vehicles for one year.
The Inmar Healthcare Network’s One Touch Advantage solution collects returns data at the first touch point and is used so reporting can be delivered to government agencies faster and the compliance rate percentage can be reported as much as one month earlier. Data feeds and online reporting that track the product at key process points—receiving, processing and disposition—provide the manufacturer with important detail.