Wal-Mart is partnering with the University of Arkansas and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arkansas to establish the Center for Innovation in Health Care Logistics. According to the press release:
The Centerâ€™s initial work will address information technology-based innovations for bringing visibility and tracking to every level of health care procurement and distribution processes.
Experience shows that such transparency leads to significant cost savings by eliminating duplication and confusion, enhancing collaboration among participating organizations and avoiding mistakes that can lead to dangerous errors.
Health care will definitely benefit from Wal-Mart’s expertise in supply chain management. It will be interesting to see where this leads. Wal-Mart’s committing just $1 million over five years, which may buy a lot generics at a Wal-Mart but won’t cover too many researchers. The Center plans to raise additional funds to cover its operations.