Device advice - Issue 5
Hospital medical devices newsletter
Your update on PHARMAC’s Hospital Medical Devices programme
Issue 5 - 17 April 2014
In this issue:
PHARMAC is about to release a discussion document seeking feedback on considerations for the implementation of the approach to national hospital medical devices management. The document will be released in early May.
What’s in it?
PHARMAC’s discussion document will describe the approach to management of hospital medical devices. This will provide clarity about how PHARMAC intends to carry out this extended role in the sector.
The document will also describe the first steps that PHARMAC intends to take to move from optional national contracts for selected medical devices, to applying more tools to gain greater benefits from a national management approach. This will happen as the Financial Management Information System (FMIS) becomes available in DHBs. The document will outline PHARMAC’s intention to continue to seek clinical input to inform our work as we move into new device areas, category by category, over time.
In developing the approach to management, PHARMAC has considered all the information received from the sector and others through various consultations and discussions with particular individuals and groups. The knowledge and expertise offered has been invaluable to informing the way forward.
What we want from you
Your continued engagement as this work progresses is essential to ensuring PHARMAC can help DHBs fully realise the benefits of PHARMAC’s national management approach.
PHARMAC is seeking submissions from the sector and any other interested parties to the discussion document. We encourage you to read the document and provide feedback on any implementation issues you envisage with the approach.
How you can get involved
You will be able to make written submissions to the Discussion Document, and we also welcome your feedback in person.
Similar to our last consultation, PHARMAC will be holding a series of forums in DHBs, where you can put forward your views.
Anyone is welcome to attend, and details for these are:
Friday 16 May
Medical Lecture Theatre
Palmerston North Hospital
12pm – 2pm
Tuesday 20 May
Bryant Education Centre
12 – 2pm
Thursday 22 May
11am – 1pm
Friday 23 May
Oncology Lecture Theatre
Christchurch Public Hospital
12pm – 2pm
Monday 26 May
Auditorium, Clinical Education Centre,
12pm – 2pm
Friday 30 May
Main Lecture Theatre, Ko Awatea Centre, Middlemore Hospital
12pm – 2pm
Tuesday 3 June
Small lecture theatre, School of Medicine,
University of Otago Wellington
12pm – 2pm
Wednesday 11 June
12pm – 1.30pm
PHARMAC has received feedback from a range of individuals and groups, over time, which has been instrumental in forming our approach to management.
A summary of your written and verbal submissions to the most recent consultation, Applying the PHARMAC model to hospital medical devices, which was held late last year, will be published at the same time as the Discussion Document.
An executive summary, bringing together the key themes of all of the feedback we have gathered through our various consultations and meetings, has also been prepared and will be published at the same time.
PHARMAC’s initial procurement activity is underway and is already making savings for the sector on items already being used in DHBs.
Through establishing national contracts for particular categories of products, we have so far made savings of $1.1 million per annum. Annual savings figures assume DHBs will not change brands, so if changes were to occur, the savings would likely be greater.
As of 1 April 2014, PHARMAC has listed almost 1,300 medical devices on the Pharmaceutical Schedule, covering estimated national expenditure of $26 million per annum. We expect to substantially increase this over the next while – we will keep you updated as work progresses.
National contracts are now available with five suppliers for ranges of wound care products, sutures and disposable laparoscopic equipment. We are continuing negotiations with these and other suppliers on what other opportunities there are.
The national contracts aim to get national consistency, transparency and where possible a reduction in cost for particular items. DHBs still deal directly with suppliers to obtain these products but if they take up the contract, they pay a national price negotiated by PHARMAC.
Key points about PHARMAC’s current procurement activity
DHBs do not need to change current suppliers unless they choose to do so, but are encouraged to consider taking up these opportunities in order to maximise savings. Information to support DHBs to take up national contracts is available on the PHARMAC website and has been provided to procurement managers in DHBs.
Some other points for DHBs about national contracts:
- DHBs encouraged to purchase listed items – but remains discretionary for the time being
- DHBs still deal directly with suppliers to purchase items
- DHBs can still access items not yet listed
- PHARMAC is not prioritising funding for new devices/technology with these product groups. If a new product enters the market, DHBs can decide whether they wish to purchase that product.
- We will continue to work with HBL, HealthAlliance and DHBs to ensure our efforts are coordinated.
Where to next
We have also released a request on the Government’s tender service, GETS, for Registrations of Interest from suppliers of interventional cardiology equipment. This closes on 2 May. We will then consider responses before taking next steps in this category.
We are currently negotiating with suppliers of other categories of products and will update you as these discussions progress. Product categories where work is currently underway include more wound care products, sutures, orthopaedic implants (spine & trauma), interventional cardiology and more laparoscopic equipment.
While we have identified some categories where we are starting activity, we have indicated we will be receptive to any approaches in categories where there might be value for DHBs in PHARMAC getting involved. We will carefully manage any overlaps with other contracts and processes where they exist.
PHARMAC will be considering more categories over time. We will regularly update you as activity progresses and let you know when we are considering particular categories of products. Watch our website for the most recent activity and consultations on proposals to list more products on the Schedule (www.pharmac.health.nz/medicines/hospital-devices/interim-procurement-project/current-activity/)
As mentioned previously, we are currently reviewing our decision criteria, as part of a wider review of our Operating Policies and Procedures. This is important for the development of our processes for managing hospital medical devices, because it is currently proposed that the new approach would apply to devices as well as medicines.
Consultation is open on a proposal for change and you can make a submission until 21 April 2014.
PHARMAC recently hosted a discussion forum on this proposal, which was very well attended and provided some excellent feedback from a range of stakeholders.
Attendees also discussed the planned review of the Named Patient Pharmaceutical Assessment process, and the recently announced contestable fund for rare disorders.
The fund is a response to concerns about access to these medicines that PHARMAC has been hearing from patients through forums and consultations in recent months.
We thank all those who took the time to participate in this session.
More on all of these issues can be found on the PHARMAC website:
We are continuing to work alongside Health Benefits Limited (HBL), which is implementing the Finance, Procurement and Supply Chain Business Case in DHBs, and other organisations such as healthAlliance, whose work intersects with ours.
For more information on PHARMAC’s role in this process, please contact us.
We will regularly be updating all interested groups about the progress of the project.
Feel free to circulate this newsletter to anyone you think might be interested in this work.
You are welcome to contact us directly at any time with proposals, suggestions or concerns.
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call: 04 460 4990
You can also find all of our medical devices information on our website:
If you would like information about other PHARMAC activity, you can also sign up to receive one of our other newsletters like Inpharmation to keep up-to-date with how this work might affect you. There are also regular updates on the HML web pages.
You may be interested in PHARMAC’s activity over the past year and you can read this in our Annual Review.
If you want to stay in touch with the review of all PHARMAC’s Operating Policies and Procedures go to: www.pharmac.health.nz/about/operating-policies-and-procedures
Last updated: 26 January 2017