Running a medical practice is hard enough without worrying about your supplier, so it is paramount that you strike a deal with the right vendor(s) that can meet the ever-growing medical supply needs which come via the needs of your patients.
In this article, it is our goal to help you do just that.
Below, we will present you with some general tips that will help you find the right medical supplies partner for your practice and ensure a long-lasting relationship with them. One that will help you ensure quality supplies, service, and cost savings too.
Here are 10 tips you should consider.
1. Assess Your General Supply Needs
The first step in finding the right supplier is knowing what medical supplies you actually need. Do you need a supplier for in-house medications? Or someone to provide you with the tools and instruments required to treat patients? Are you looking for a supplier that will provide you with equipment for your practice too? Perhaps, only face masks are on your current list?
It all depends on your inventory requirements. There is a good chance that one supplier will not be able to provide all the things you are looking for. Some suppliers might be suitable for only certain equipment, but they might not be able to provide you with the medications, and vice versa.
Therefore, figure out what it is that you require, assess your general needs, and then look for a supplier or multiple ones.
2. Ensure Proper Communication
If you can’t communicate clearly with your medical supply vendor, there is a good chance that you won’t be able to collaborate with them in the long run. They might have everything you need and require, but the two of you aren’t able to get on the same page because you can’t communicate clearly. That’s a problem you don’t want to have, and it’ll cost you more than just money in the long run.
Always make sure you get into business with folks that are understanding and can properly and seamlessly communicate with you. If you do that, you’re pretty much halfway done.
3. Go with A Reputable Medical Supplier
One of the easiest ways to ensure you end up in a great business relationship with a medical supply distributor for your practice is to try and go straight for the bigger, well-established, reputable companies with a rich history in the medical field.
Experience is always welcome, whatever it is that you do. It allows for peace of mind, knowing that the experts on the other end have done this exact thing numerous times before. They will know how to handle problems (which eventually happen), and to stay on top of things and deal with these issues as they emerge.
4. Don’t Exclude a Smaller Distributor
You shouldn’t exclude small, upcoming medical supply distributors trying to make their mark in the business world.
They have a lot to prove and can prove to be of great value to your business too.
Everyone starts small – even you did. And, if no one gave you an opportunity, you wouldn’t have ended up where you are right now. Sure, it might be a bit unsettling not knowing will they be able to handle the job, but you won’t know until you try.
The best thing about going with a new, relatively small distributor and a supplier is you’ll probably get a better deal on your supplies – at least from a financial standpoint. These guys are still making their way into the market, so they’ll incentivize new deals by offering better terms, and you should absolutely capitalize on that. Furthermore, they will devote you all their attention and make sure that you are 100% satisfied with the purchase.
5. Research Potential Prospects
At the end of the day, experienced or not, you still must research your suppliers.
The good thing is, all of them will probably have a website you can go on and read everything that you need to know about their business. For instance, if you were to visit the online medical store Bttn, you’ll easily find all the info on a large variety of medical supplies, equipment, inventory in stock, prices, their partners, and more.
You should also go online and just read customer comments, reviews, and other useful information you can find on the supplier you’re interested in. Reading what other people had to say about them will help you figure out whether you should get into business with them or not.
6. Negotiate the Best Deal Possible
We’ll keep this brief – be prepared to negotiate.
Depending on the volume or the actual supplies you need, you may be able to work out a better deal that will save you some money, both in the short and long term.
So, haggle if you must.
7. Have a Variety of Medical Suppliers Pitch Their Bids to You
We all know that medical sales reps just pop out of nowhere when you have a medical practice, so why not make the most of it?
Let the suppliers come to you.
Letting them pitch their best offers to you will give you leverage to negotiate a better deal. Whether one-time purchases or better deals for repeat purchases or bulk orders on your must needed supplies. It’s that simple.
8. Inquire About Their Scalability
This is a big one. Especially if you plan on expanding your practice beyond your current office location.
If you’ve set your sights on branching out in the future and opening new practices, private clinics, and whatnot, you need to surround yourself with suppliers that can follow your growth.
Just because they can easily supply one of your practices does not mean they will be able to handle a dozen. So, keep that in mind.
9. Ensure Supplies Are Readily Available
This is true for most medical suppliers and distributors, but in this case – it’s absolutely vital. If it ever comes to a point where you need new meds and supplies STAT – your provider must get them to you as soon as possible.
Medicine is not the field you can afford to wait around for things to come about. It’s just not how it works, and you need to arm yourself with a distributor that understands that.
In all fairness, you are also the one that must ensure that emergencies like these don’t happen, but it can’t hurt to have someone that can watch your back in case they do.
10. Get Everything in Writing
In the end, you want to make sure you get the deal in writing.
You won’t be able to procure meds or any other medical supplies without a proper receipt, but that’s not what we’re talking about.
We’re talking about signing a contract that holds both parties accountable. You need to ensure that your supplier doesn’t just bail on you one day without any warning or consequences.
You’re saving lives – there’s no room for situations like these in the medical industry.
Sign a contract. But make sure you’re protected and have your attorney look it over and make any amendments to it ensuring you’re not stuck with a supplier who is giving you faulty medical supplies or promises on supplies that are not in stock, amongst many other issues you could potentially encounter too.
The bottom line on medical supplies
Who knew that it only took ten tips to ensure a long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationship between you and your supplier? We did. And now you know, too.