At ASP Global, we’ve noticed a sharp uptick in IDN leaders asking us to apply their own health system brand and logo to clinical care products.  What’s driving this strategy for leading health systems? We took a closer look at some of our recent client projects to find out.

What’s self-branding? “Self-branding”, “house branding”, or “health-system-branded” are all synonyms for the application of your organization’s brand identity to the packaging of a clinical care product (like a gloves box) or the product itself (like a drinking cup). Brand elements applied to the product can include your colors, your logo, your brand name, or your tagline. Is it the same as white-labeling? “White labeling” places your brand on a generic product offering. Self-branding starts with defining your local requirements, and then applies your brand to an item that meets your unique preferences. Self-branded products are often designed just for your organization.

Brand with caution: Your health system brand has hard-earned value. You should only apply it to those products that are worthy of your reputation for quality.

Health system leaders making the request for self-branded products come from five different roles within the organization. Here’s our analysis of who asks for self-branded products, example projects drawn from our client relationships, and the way each leader benefits.

Supply Chain Leaders

Supply chain leaders work hard to maximize value for every product purchased. Applying their own health system brand to the products that “make the cut” assures clinicians that these products will meet their local requirements. The health system brand works almost like a health system “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval’, and can even support product conversions or standardization efforts.

How we help: A large AMC requested self-branded packaging for nitrile exam gloves that met their requirements for fit, ease of use, fit, tactile features, and compliance with chemotherapy testing protection. ASP Global sourced the right glove from from our network of trusted manufacturers who could meet the health system requirements and apply the health system brand to the package. Seeing the system brand assures clinicians that these gloves meet the requirements they set at a 20%+ savings.

Centralized Supply Chain Organization Leaders and Purchasing Group Leaders

Supply chain leaders who serve constituents from many organizations must take a different approach to self-branding. Extending one member’s brand across multiple purchasers’ facilities isn’t an option. These complex organizations want to communicate that they have done the work of sourcing a high-value product that meets members’ needs, but they need to use a neutral organizational brand.

How we help: A Midwestern purchasing organization applied the purchasing organization’s brand to packaged wipes, letting each member know that their quality and cost requirements were met with this product. The supply chain organization hopes to build value for their network of health system beyond contracting, by extending the benefits of direct sourcing for these branded products.

Marketing executives

As competition for patient loyalty reaches fever-pitch in some regions, marketers are determined to make every contact count. Applying the health system brand to both clinical and patient-use products extends brand recognition and engagement beyond a single care encounter.

How we help: A large southeastern system applied the health system brand to durable, insulated mugs. The mugs are given to patients at admission. During their stay, measurement lines on the outside of the mug track fluid intake, and then go home with the patients at discharge.

Clinical leaders

Most patients will need to participate in their own care after they are discharged or treated. Clinical leaders have a narrow window in which to educate, motivate, and engage the patient in their own care. Every reminder helps. Clinical leaders have asked us to apply the health system brand to the supplies that go home with patients to connect the care they received with their own self-care at home.

How we help: A leading health system placed the health system brand on personal scales that patients can take home with them post-discharge, creating a link between their inpatient stay and their new weight monitoring routines at home.

Patient experience leaders

Health systems want to differentiate their service with patient experience excellence. Innovators in this role work to structure defined moments of caring interaction with clinicians around branded products, even providing clinicians with talking points to guide the interaction for maximum impact. Branded amenity kits were a starting point for many patient experience executives, who are now branching out into more ‘patient preference items” meant to comfort or even pamper patients.

How we help: A large southeastern hospital wanted to offer patients both personal cooling and background “white noise” to mask unit sounds. Patient temperature and noise levels are major drivers of patient satisfaction. The hospital applied their brand to personal electric fans, available to use in patient rooms and then take home.

Will you apply your health system brand to a high-quality product this year, to support supply standardization, drive savings for your group, engage and comfort patients, or extend your brand? We’re happy to share what we’ve learned from developing self-branded products for leading health systems. Our unique business model puts you in control of product quality, cost, and design including branding. We look forward to learning more about your needs and sharing the best-practices we’ve learned.