Previously published as: British Journal of Clinical Governance
Online from: 2003
Subject Area: Health Care Management/Healthcare
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Article citation: , (2011) "Special issue on sourcing and outsourcing decisions for a sustainable healthcare supply chain: opportunities, challenges and leading practices", Clinical Governance: An International Journal, Vol. 16 Iss: 3, pp. -
Submission deadline: 30 November 2011
International healthcare systems are under increasing pressure to reduce waste and eliminate unnecessary costs, while improving the quality and consistency of the care they provide to patients. The EU's Second Health Programme (2008-2013) has recently stressed the urgent need to increase the sustainability of public health systems in the face of important challenges, including the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases (elderly people) and patients' demands for high- quality care and the latest diagnostics and treatments available. With the same pressure, in many other parts of the world Governments are calling for similar initiatives. International experiences demonstrate that the implementation of integrated Supply Chain Management leading practices by public healthcare organizations would yield significant savings (i.e. inefficient and redundant processes reduction) and focus more on the core: the patient care mission. That said, there does not seem to be a single best approach: it is up to each organization to determine the most appropriate strategy and target areas for coping with the peculiar characteristics of the healthcare sector: i.e. the criticality of the service provided to customers, the breadth of products and services purchased, the challenges of law- oriented instead of efficiency-oriented processes, the power of suppliers and the supply network capillarity.
Under this scenario, there is no doubt that outsourcing in the healthcare sector is rapidly gaining popularity among Government, Industry and Academia in both developed and developing countries. Addressing key questions such as ``How does outsourcing work in the healthcare sector at present?'' and ``How should it work in the future?'' is of pivotal importance to support current efforts to modernise and optimize the sector and eventually improve the quality of healthcare provision – and consequently, quality of life – in the future.
This special issue of Strategic Outsourcing: An International Journal, attempts to motivate state-of the-art research in the areas of sustainable procurement and strategic outsourcing in the healthcare sector. This issue will explore how sourcing and outsourcing knowledge today meets, or does not meet, the healthcare sector requirements. We aim to explore outsourcing enablers and barriers typical to the healthcare sector and to discuss the implications of applying outsourcing in terms both of economics and of quality of the service provided. To fulfil this purpose, the present issue aims to combine both strategic and methodological efforts in this field.
Articles covering the following topics are welcome for the special issue (but not limited to):
Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere. Papers should be prepared according to the Strategic Outsourcing: An International Journal author guidelines.
Manuscripts should be 3,500-7,000 words in length and all contributions will be subject to a double blind review process.
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Assistant Professor of Industrial Plants and Logistics,
Department of Management and Engineering, University of Padova, Vicenza, 36100, Italy
Associate Professor of Management Science,
Operations Management Area, DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University, Ontario, Canada
Associate Professor of Information Systems,
Dept. of Applied Informatics, University of Macedonia,
Thessaloniki, 54006, Greece