When it comes to advancing the field, AHRMM is the industry leader for providing information, education, and practice models. By tapping into the knowledge of AHRMM’s membership and industry contacts, the Association has been able to create a library of white papers written by some of the field’s most innovative and influential leaders. Note: viewing of all white papers is a members-only benefit.

White Papers

Long a standard for exchanging ideas in the profession, white papers serve as analytical resources for exploring and confronting the challenges and complexities faced in the supply chain field. AHRMM welcomes new additions to its library. 

Submit your white paper today.

Fellow Papers

Original in content and written by Fellow AHRMM (FAHRMM) members, these papers describe innovative, practical, and cost-effective approaches and/or experiences in the healthcare supply chain. Subjects include purchasing, materials management, support services, and more.

Fellow Paper Guidelines




Cost, Quality, and Outcomes: The Future of Healthcare Supply Chain

Type: AHRMM14 Executive Thought Leader Summit White Paper

This white paper was written following the first Executive Thought Leader Summit held during the AHRMM14 Annual Conference on August 4, 2014.  The Summit convened thought leaders to work collectively to extend the Cost, Quality, and Outcomes (CQO) Movement’s provider level success outward and to identify mutual areas of collaboration across the healthcare field. Read paper.

Realizing the Risks of Outsourcing: An Equipment Management Case Study

Grace Jackson, BA, MS, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow Paper 

This fellow paper presents a case study illustration of one organizations journey through an outsource implementation.  Through a consolidation of lessons learned, standard protocols for ongoing vendor relationship and performance management are established. Read Paper.

KanBan for Inventory Management in the GI Lab

Lora L Johnson, BSN, RN CMRP

Type: White Paper

This white paper was written as a review of inventory distribution methods utilized throughout healthcare including advantages, disadvantages, and considerations of best practice to assist with the selection of the correct method to be used in managing variable need supplies for a busy remote GI Lab. Read Paper.




Cost, Quality, and Outcomes: The Supply Chain Value Equation

Type: AHRMM13 Executive Thought Leader Forum Paper Sponsored by VHA

This white paper was written following the Executive Thought Leader Forum held during the AHRMM13 Annual Conference on July 29, 2013. The Forum session was designed to determine where organizations and supply chain leaders are in relation to CQO, what their needs are relating to development of future materials, and marketing current available materials. Read Paper

International Models of Volume Aggregation in Procurement

Christopher J. O'Connor

Type: Fellow

This paper explores volume aggregation in the United States, Botswana, the United Kingdom, and China, comparing their similarities and detailing why this strategic approach to supply chain management achieves success in various health system models. Read Paper  


Team Based Purchasing in Healthcare – A New World

David T. Early, CPM, FAHRMM, CMRP

Type: Fellow

This AHRMM Fellow paper describes the steps taken to change the hierarchical management style to a team-based work culture, the actions taken to implement lean tools, and the wins achieved by the team. Read Paper





Impact of Reform and the Recession on Supply Chain Management

Type: AHRMM12 Executive Thought Leader Forum Paper Sponsored by VHA

This white paper was written as a result of an Executive Thought Leader Forum hosted by AHRMM on August 6, 2012, to discuss the transforming healthcare environment. It recaps a discussion by seasoned healthcare supply chain executives of the results of the 2012 Healthcare Provider Executive Supply Chain Survey. Review their opinions on the impacts of healthcare reform and the recessionary economy on supply chain management. The Executive Thought Leader Forum was sponsored by VHA, and held during the AHRMM 50th Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas. Read Paper

Innovation, Transformation, Automation

Mary Beth Lang, Sc.D

UPMC Health System is the winner of The 2010 Award for Excellence in Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation, sponsored by Cardinal Health.

In an increasingly complex healthcare environment where health systems are continually expected to do more with less, UPMC Health System began looking for a solution to reduce supply chain costs, while heightening supply chain performance, by challenging conventional healthcare practices. Recognizing that increased automation is vital to driving contract compliance, mitigating risk and optimizing efficiency, UPMC Health System chose an innovative new approach to quickly leverage our enterprise
resource planning (ERP) investment. Read Paper

Strategic Sourcing in Healthcare

John P. Willi, MBA, CPCM, C.P.M., A.P.P., CMRP, FARHMM

Type: Fellow

Focusing on strategic sourcing is a must in today’s challenging healthcare environment for any organization. This AHRMM Fellow paper examines what exactly is strategic sourcing, and what are its benefits. The paper addresses several leading practices helping to achieve sustainable results, including identifying opportunities by conducting a strategic sourcing process, preparing a supplier profile, understanding supplier risk and recognizing dynamics of a supplier market. Read Paper

Supply Utilization: Expanding Supply Savings Efforts

Darcy Aafedt, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

A case-study describing Banner Health's implementation of a strategic initiative to address supply utilization across seven states in 23 facilities. Read Paper

Transforming Healthcare Supply Chains into Healthcare Value Chains 

Dale L. Locklair, FAHRMM, CMRP

Type: Fellow

This Fellow paper examines internal supply chain processes and hospital management principles that are expected to bring best results - reduced costs and improved quality of care - in the new value-based purchasing model. Read Paper





Applying Supply Chain Best Practices from Other Industries to Healthcare

Karen Conway

Type: White Paper

The paper examines the supply chain as seen as a strategic asset that can be leveraged to meet operational, clinical, and financial performance imperatives. Read Paper

Contract Management – Going Beyond the Signed Agreement

Bruce W. Zartman, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

This paper identifies lessons learned from implementing an expanded contract management at East Alabama Medical Center. Read Paper

Elevating the Supply Chain Profession and Futurecast

Type: AHRMM11 Executive Thought Leaders Event Report Sponsored by VHA

A thought-provoking report on the broad range of strategic issues and challenges confronting today’s supply chain executives. The report presents perspectives of 26 seasoned healthcare supply chain executives who attended the Executive Thought Leader Event, sponsored by VHA, held on August 8, 2011, during AHRMM11 Annual Conference in Boston, Massachusetts. Read Paper

Healthcare Transformation: A Private Affair

Karen Conway

Type: White paper

This white paper explores the realities facing healthcare delivery, some of the new models being developed and what they could mean for the supply chain. Read Paper





Changing the Way We Do Business: A Case Study of Lean Six Sigma in Healthcare Supply Chain Management

Jerry VanVactor, DHA, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

Healthcare is an industry wherein leaders and entire communities can benefit from process improvement and lean six sigma project management. Lean initiatives can aid leaders and organizations in identifying possibilities where problems have perpetually existed. The techniques associated with lean six sigma strategies involve a data-driven, customer-centered approach and methodology that is applicable to all aspects of healthcare processes and services. Read Paper

Developing a Socially Responsible Closed Loop Supply Chain
Jane Pleasants

This white paper was submitted for The Award for Excellence in Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation and received special recognition.
Paper describes innovative solutions and efficient operating procedures in the areas of supplier diversity, green purchasing, and surplus property management, for practicing socially responsible supply chain techniques to eliminate waste and decrease hospital’s demand for natural resources. Read Paper

Developing a World-Class Purchasing Department
John P. Willi, MBA, CPCM, CPM, APP, CMRP

This white paper was submitted for The Award for Excellence in Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation and received special recognition.
Description of a three-year initiative to transform a major metropolitan ambulatory facility’s Purchasing Department into a world-class strategic group through an implementation of a continuous customer service campaign throughout the organization. Read Paper

Improving & Managing the Sterilization Process Through the Use of Surgical Instrument Management Software & Lean

Jan Jarvinen

Gundersen Lutheran's winning submission of The 2010 Award for Excellence in Healthcare Supply Chain Innovation, sponsored by Cardinal Health

Description of an integrated delivery network project - a Central Services Lean Six Sigma Reprocessing Project for Surgical Instrument Management (SIM) - that created greater efficiency in serving the Operating Rooms, and streamlined the workflow to increase accuracy, decrease errors and missing instruments, decrease training time, and increase transparency of tracking, productivity, and efficiency data. Read Paper

Optimizing the Supply Chain through Data Transparency and Integration

Gina Thomas, RN, BSN, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

The paper addresses the importance of the supply chain on overall health care costs and how transparent data can lead to a best practice supply chain. Identifying necessary data as well as the location of that data to understand a complete cost structure is a challenge for supply chain leaders. Fragmented systems in healthcare lead to a weak and inefficient supply chain. This data fragmentation in healthcare causes frustration and failure in optimizing the supply chain. Success has been achieved by linking all aspects of the patient record (financial, clinical, and operational data elements), which results in an efficient supply chain and an overall positive impact to the care and quality of the patient. Read Paper





Contract Management Often Overlooked, Yet Vitally Important

Valerie A. Bailey, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

Hospitals purchase hundreds of thousands of supplies and pieces of equipment each year, and most of those products have contracted pricing available for use. But how often is the time taken to look at each product category or GPO contract to search for pricing opportunities? Not all facilities have a dedicated Materials Management person who has the time and capabilities to delve into the data and find the gold nuggets.  Read Paper

Rethinking the Laundry Process

Jeffrey F. Solarek

Type: Fellow

Linen expenditures and laundry processing account for a large portion of our six members Health Delivery System’s (HDS) budget.  As a part of our of our continuous improvement quality process, we identified the need to streamline our linen and laundry operations in order to improve efficiencies and drive out costs.  Our goal was to utilize modern methodology and technology to implement and sustain linen and laundry best practices – therefore driving savings and nursing satisfaction throughout the system. Read Paper

Save Money on Cellular Phone Plans and Improve Employee Satisfaction in Supply Chain Management

J. Travis Dowell

Type: Fellow

How can a supply chain manager raise employee morale and satisfaction? Numerous ways! A supply chain manager can read magazines, search the internet and attend educational seminars to learn about ideas that raise employee morale and satisfaction. Ideas such as better benefits, better pay, better facilities and better equipment are on the list. These are great ideas but these items are expensive to a healthcare institution. Money does not grow on trees and most healthcare organizations have finite financial resources readily available to them to make immediate changes. So, let’s get innovative and ask the following question, how can a supply chain manager raise employee morale and satisfaction plus save its’ employees money? Read Paper

Value-Based Purchasing and Comparative Effectiveness: Why Materials Managers Should Embrace the Coming Market Evolution

Josh Feldstein & Elizabeth Brooks

Type: White Paper

For a number of years, the discipline of health economics has assisted healthcare stakeholders in making informed evaluations of treatment alternatives. Today, that discipline may provide the necessary perspective to help materials managers and other healthcare stakeholders negotiate the rapidly shifting economic imperatives. Read Paper





Community Supply Chain Professional

Kathi Pressley, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

The role of the Supply Chain Professional (SCP) must grow beyond the basement walls into both the regional and global community. This expansion will bring value to both the SCP and to community touch points. Be it through volunteerism or as a contracted professional, the innate and learned attributes and abilities of the SCP will bring value to community activities and ultimately back to the employer. This paper explores the unique characteristics of SCPs, both innate and learned, and types of venues where their knowledge and experience coupled with those of community members bring value to all partners. Challenges and opportunities incumbent in this outreach and resultant relationships are explored. Read Paper

Identifying Cost Savings Opportunities


Type: Fellow

The scope of this project was to develop a comprehensive plan for identifying medical supply savings for Avera McKennan Hospital and University Health Center. Compiling research and analyzing data assisted in accomplishing this goal. Avera McKennan’s line item pricing was benchmarked against IMS Health, which represents 350 hospitals across the United States. Results revealed significant medical supply savings opportunities of $2,063,284.57. The results were separated into two categories: pricing mismatches and obsolete inventory. Individual departments prioritized these savings opportunities in order of importance relative to their department, which became the blueprint of the project. Read Paper





Applying Lean Principles to Design Effective Supply Chains

MAJ David R. Gibson, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

"Applying Lean Principles to Design Effective Supply Chains," addresses seven fundamental lean manufacturing principles and their supply chain equivalent. Lean management principles addressed include: inventory, overproduction, correction, motion, conveyance, waiting, and processing. Supply chain equivalents are respectively identified as: inventory, overstockage, reports of discrepancy, motion, transportation, lead time, and processing. Read Paper

A Capital Idea

Mickey Sparrow, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

The purpose of this paper is to offer a solution to gaining more control over your capital purchase process.  It offers an easy to use, comprehensive process to a problem that plagues many Materials Managers and is easily adapted to satisfy the needs of any size facility. Read Paper    


Paperless-Based Initiatives for Medical Logistics

Gregory Thomas Scott

Type: Fellow

Paperless-based initiatives, also known as computerized logistics, will require buy-in from your executive management across the entire organization.  The Materials Management Director must decide on how much functionality is required for their desired outcome. Read Paper

A Primer on Transitioning Your Materials Resource Management (MRM) Department from a Cost Center to a Revenue Center

Donna R. Bean, MBA, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

To turn traditional cost centers into revenue producing centers you need to look for additional volume in these functional areas to help reduce the fixed or overhead costs and therefore reduce the total costs.  You will need to know your costs, and as you take on additional volume and charge for those services above your costs, you generate other revenue. Read Paper

Robotic Innovations: Completing the Supply Chain Circle

Jimmy D. Sauls, Jr.

Type: Fellow

The United States Air Force Academy has taken a leap of faith by implementing state-of-the-art technology in every step of their supply chain management processes. An in-depth study of their project description, their business objective, various technologies used, constituent groups, cost and benefit analysis, key obstacles and solutions, and the migration to other medical logistics activities will be revealed. Read Paper





Medical Waste Improve Safety and Save Money

Rex A. Stephenson

Type: Leading Practice

There can be many improper uses for medical waste containers (red cans) and disposing of medical waste in many areas of a hospital. In patient rooms, visitors can place soda cans, pizza boxes, and more into our red cans. Medical staffs should help dispose of improper items in the red cans. To do so, staff should be educated on proper waste disposal and some processes should be changed. Read Paper





Fine Tuning Par Levels

Debra L. Mark, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

Using Lock Haven Hospital par level cart system as a case study, this article will explore evaluating, implementing improvements, reduction of par level inventory, elimination of wasted time, educating all personnel involved as well as complying with corporate policy. Read Paper

Medical/Surgical Central Supply Logistics’ LUM Stockless with Point of Use Closed Cabinets

William A. Myers, MS, CHE, RD, LD, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

I have written this detailed paper as an example of a facility that has combined low unit of measure (LUM) and a full utilization of electronic data interchange (EDI) in a closed cabinet environment for the clinical end users. My role in this process has been to develop processes to monitor shrinkage, lost charges, as well as to utilize the closed cabinet process for both patient charging and reordering. Read Paper

Not Just Buyers - Enhancing the Stature of the Procurement Function in Your Organization

William P. Stitt, CHL, CRCST, CMRP, FAHRMM

Type: Fellow

This paper will discuss the benefits of working to elevate the skill level of the purchasing professional in the healthcare setting so that they may contribute to the management of expenses and the overall supply chain as well as positively impact the financial bottom line. The paper will explain why this is a necessary aspect of today’s materials environment, tools that can be used to achieve those goals, implementation of this methodology, and the continued refinement and communication of the process. Read Paper