Medical device classifications systems, such as the Generic Implant Classification (GIC)©, are an important tool for healthcare supply chain teams. They help teams compare clinical products and identify variables that determine what drives the success or failure of certain products. GIC is considered the gold standard because of its high accuracy with clinical product data due to its multidimensional nature. Built with surgeons and clinicians, GIC enables healthcare supply chain teams to efficiently sort through a significant amount of data in a standardized way, improving utilization, increasing savings opportunities, reducing practice pattern variation and, ultimately fueling data and insights that can help improve patient outcomes.

One additional benefit of leveraging the GIC classification in healthcare systems is an often seamless integration. GIC is additive and can be implemented into existing data initiatives easily, with minimal time required from the supply chain team, while quickly driving improved insights from other analytical tools and investments.

Three key ways healthcare supply chain teams can leverage GIC.

1. Having apples-to-apples discussions with clinicians
A powerful benefit of using the GIC classification is that the healthcare supply chain team, as well as surgeons and other clinicians, can all be on the same page when it comes to describing and comparing the medical devices at hand. Having a standard classification for the devices used within the health system makes it possible for the various groups within the system to have an apples-to-apples comparison of clinical products and components.
For example, if you are a surgeon and look at a product coming from the supply chain, you know which products do the same thing or have the same material or size, and those that do not. As such, you are able to look at market benchmark prices and utilization in a more clinically relevant way and have conversations between supply chain and clinicians in which you are all speaking the same language. The ability to have conversations like this is the foundation of a clinically integrated supply chain and unlocks the potential to truly impact the patient value equation.

On the clinical side, the construct and procedural levels that come on top of the GIC classification system are the next level of data quality and validity, which can significantly improve clinical utilization analysis.

2. Enriching for master data management
Once your organization implements GIC enrichments, one area that is important to consider is master data management, which is the ability to input the GIC enrichment and values for various products into the item master. This is especially important as it makes it possible for teams to pull reports and generate details that are accurate, consistent and relevant to the organization. For example, if a physician needs information on pedicle screws or a sourcing team is looking for background on total joints, the supply chain team can quickly share detailed information about those products that can help their colleagues make informed decisions which can, ultimately, help improve patient care.

Quality master data management unlocks the potential around cross references and subs, fuels data warehouse initiatives and allows for construct analysis in challenging clinical categories.
There is value on the sourcing side, as well. For example, when considering a contract from a vendor, you can obtain the enrichment values to be able to fully understand what vendors are providing to you. This equips the supply chain team with the information they need to have a confident discussion with a vendor about the value they are providing and to make an informed decision about the product.

Quality master data management unlocks the potential around cross references and subs, fuels data warehouse initiatives and allows for construct analysis in challenging clinical categories.
Improving the master data through GIC enrichments can reduce manual data work cross functionally in the organization. Having quality, accurate and reliable GIC-enriched source data can reduce the need for manual intervention to resolve errors – and, with these stronger classifications, providers can see higher match rates on their item master than ever before.

GIC can also be important for organizations that submit their data to registries in order to track patients and outcomes over time. Having the GIC classification as the epicenter of this process makes it easy to see the links between devices, patient outcomes and business metrics. For example, if you want to know the infection rates of a particular device, you can find the link between registry data and clinical outcomes data on a macro basis and track that against your supply spend. As healthcare supply chain teams begin leveraging GIC classifications, they will be able to unlock the true power of their data.

3. Improving accuracy of bill-only processes
This data can also help streamline your organization’s bill-only process, where accuracy is typically a challenge. Because of its high accuracy and powerful construct logic and validations, GIC classification can add the clarity that providers need to the bill-only process.

When you have GIC classification at the root of all medical devices and components, you can easily build the logic of how they will reasonably come together, so that you are able to analyze the procedure as a whole. For example, this allows you to more accurately flag and answer questions such as: Am I paying on contract with this particular vendor? What parts of this procedure do not fit what is on the bill?

Unlocking the power of data

Coordination across the health system is key for any initiative intended to improve the quality and value of patient care. When these initiatives involve extracting insights from clinical supply data, it’s essential that everyone involved uses a standardized approach to categorize, assess and manage that data. The GIC classification system can be an important tool for improving the accuracy of data, which saves a substantial amount of time across the system and ultimately makes the data more useful for clinical and supply chain teams alike.

Interested in learning more? Schedule a demo with us, and check out our Lookup tool with a two week free trial, which allows supply chain and value analysis teams to research clinical products by GIC.