Supply chains of the healthcare industry arguably underwent the largest disruption last year. And as the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic continues, here are six predictions and trends that will dominate healthcare supply chains in 2022. ​​

Strain on medical equipment manufacturers likely to continue

1. Strain on medical equipment manufacturers likely to continue

According to GE CEO Larry Culp, a shortage in labor and raw materials will continue to make it difficult for the company’s healthcare business to meet the strong demand. He added that the trend would likely continue till mid-2022 - A fate that can be faced by the rest of the industry.

*Source: medicaldesignandoutsourcing.com

Supply chain resiliency will continue to be a top priority

2. Supply chain resiliency will continue to be a top priority

Stakeholders in healthcare supply chains will continue to build resilience with greater domestic sourcing, mock drills, and leveraging technology solutions to handle uncertainty.

Technology and automation to optimize processes and expenses

3. Technology and automation to optimize processes and expenses

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) will continue to help healthcare centers reduce costs by optimizing sourcing, purchases and invoices, and inventory management.

Healthcare will be where the patient is

4. Healthcare will be where the patient is

Thanks to advances in technology, improved hospital coordination and supply chain sophistication, getting healthcare will no longer be restricted to hospitals and clinics but expand to the patient’s location.

Data-backed decision making to empower healthcare supply chains

5. Data-backed decision making to empower healthcare supply chains

The digitization and consolidation of data in the healthcare industry continues to make tremendous progress. It is expected to reach a tipping point where data can be analyzed to vastly improve supply chain efficiency and patient care.

Predictive Analytics and personalization to gain more prominence

6. Predictive Analytics and personalization to gain more prominence

AI/ML can be used to analyze data and detect patterns around demand for healthcare products. They can also be used to create personalized product catalogs. Both initiatives go a long way for supply chains to optimize inventory and improve the customer experience.

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