Intermountain Healthcare’s hi-tech 327,000 square foot fulfillment center in Midvale will help Utah’s medical infrastructure have the supplies it needs if it ever faces a disaster like the one occurring this week in Texas. While flooding on that scale seems unlikely, Utah could face other natural disasters such as an earthquake or severe winter storm.
Named the Intermountain Kem C. Gardner Supply Chain Center, the facility opened in 2012 and houses all the operations relating to the supplies Intermountain’s clinicians and caregivers use—from negotiating contracts with suppliers to warehouse storage, from purchasing to transportation logistics.
The highly-automated facility orders, purchases, stocks, and distributes about 5,000 different types of medical supplies and medications with up to a 30-day supply on hand. More than 2.5 million medical items pass through the center each year.
The Supply Chain Center is centrally located near a majority of Intermountain hospitals and clinics, with immediate access to multiple traffic arteries, including Trax and FrontRunner. In the case of a local emergency, such as a natural disaster, the center will be able to more quickly transfer needed supplies to medical facilities, as compared to relying on many out-of-state vendors to deliver supplies. It also was built to withstand a strong earthquake, up to 7.5 on the Richter Scale—the same building standard for hospitals such as Intermountain Medical Center.
By purchasing supplies directly from the manufacturer, handling the delivery of products, and streamlining processes, Intermountain strives to achieve a reduction in costs while ensuring that clinicians and caregivers receive supplies in a timely, efficient manner, especially if there is a disaster or emergency situation.
“It provides exceptional efficiency, cost savings, and provides an additional safety net for our communities if a disaster situation arises,” said Gordon Slade, Intermountain’s director of Logistics.
The facility is built to a Gold level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, meaning it was designed and built to achieve high performance in key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
How well are Utah’s medical facilities prepared for a "Texas-like" natural disaster? Intermountain's Supply Chain Center has the supplies it needs if Utah ever faces a disaster like the one occurring this week in Texas.