Healthcare providers are increasingly putting emphasis on a patient-centric approach to care delivery.  From ensuring patient safety to providing quality care at an affordable cost, care providers have embraced healthcare information technologies as a cornerstone to their operations.  A key component includes Point of Care (PoC) technology.  POC includes devices and systems that health-care professionals use to monitor patients, care for them and document progress. For example, POC scanning provides a quick and accurate means to complete data. It helps streamline, simplify and enhance the capture of clinical information, all right at the point of care.

POC scanning uses two sets of data: one from a barcode and master data (MDM) from supply chain systems.  A GS1 global trade item number (GTIN) connects the two. (The GTIN is encoded in the barcode as the UDI and stored in supply chain systems as a key to access product information, ensuring scanning accuracy.)  This process error-proofs point of care functions including administering medications, ordering tests and updating medical records.

It’s critical, therefore, that the data be accurate and 100% trusted. Developing and maintaining clean master data throughout the supply chain is a must for optimizing manufacturer-to-hospital integration and patient safety.  But unfortunately, many healthcare companies approach MDM manually via spreadsheets, small databases or ERP systems, rather than a fully automated solution.  The result is laborious and error-prone with high risk of being non-compliant.  More importantly, poor data can negatively impact patient care.  Here are our recommendations for the best approach to MDM:

Software and Systems: MDM software can streamline data sharing among personnel and departments.  In addition, MDM software can facilitate the synchronization of data across multiple system architectures, platforms, and applications.  The benefits of MDM software will increase as the number and diversity of organizational departments, employee roles and business applications expand.

Data Synchronization:  This is the process of maintaining the consistency and uniformity of data in internal business systems and between trading partners.  It ensures that the same version of master data is available to all who require it, from product source to final destination.