Hospitals could save millions on sourcing repairs by partnering with private sector – study

9 April 2015

NHS trusts could save millions on repairs and maintenance work by partnering with a private sector supply chain management specialist, according to research.

A study commissioned by Travis Perkins Managed Services, claims NHS Trusts across the UK could make significant savings each year by reorganising their repair and maintenance materials purchasing and management.

The Healthy Savings? study, by MindMetre Research, found 78 per cent of trusts have an internal repairs and maintenance department. Some 8 per cent have mixed in-house and outsourced repairs and maintenance, and 14 per cent outsource it completely.

The study concluded that among the trusts that keep repairs and maintenance in-house, there is significant inefficiency in purchasing, supplying and stocking materials.

The report said repairs and maintenance costs NHS Trusts £4.4 billion every year. It estimated trusts that look to address inefficiency through initiatives such as appointing an outside agency to take responsibility for purchasing and stocking materials, can expect to see cost savings of 10 per cent.

The research also included a profile of a Derbyshire NHS Trust that formed a shared services initiative with two local councils and a housing association, to address identified weaknesses in the buildings maintenance supply chain. The result was reduced number of supplies and savings through better negotiated prices, the report said.

James Clack, sales director at Travis Perkins Managed Services, said: “Partnering with a business that improves and shortens the supply chain presents a viable way for organisations like the NHS Trusts to better meet budgets and reduce inefficiency.

“Bringing purchasing costs closer to the original supplier not only reduces costs, it also brings the benefit of product standardisation, which leads to high product quality and lower long-term costs.”

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