SWEDEN: Do You want to understand how to sell to the Nordic health care sector? Get to know the Innovative Public Procurements program that is run by Nordic Innnovation.
The Ministers of Industry in the Nordic countries have decided to launch a Nordic program on innovation within public procurement with focus on health care. The program has been developed by a working group consisting of representatives from Ministries, National Innovation Agencies, Nordic Council of Ministers and Nordic Innovation.
There are a number of obstaclesthat cause the level of innovation to be relatively low when it comes to development of welfare and health solutions. There is first of all a lack of knowledge on how to use public procurement as an instrument in the broader framework of public service renewal. In addition, skills and mindset among procurers are fundamental because the mindset of the procurer is much about saving money and securing quality and not so much about looking at the potential for public procurement as a strategic tool to develop or enhance new technology or new solutions. This is natural; when a hospital engages in procurement of innovation, the hospital invests resources and takes a large risk, while society as a whole benefits from the innovation. Few public bodies will engage in procurement of innovation unless given a mission to do so from their owner or utilizing public incentives.
Most procurers will focus on short-term savings. Initiating processes that has the potential to reduce costs some years into the future is not always likely to have management or political backing. The way budgets are divided into posts and organizations are divided into departments, procurers are often not able to capture all benefits of a new solution (for example reduced manhours required).
Finally; good access to information is a prerequisite for a well-functioning market. The tools applied in innovation friendly procurement are meant to open up the information flow between procurer and suppliers in order to design the tender process in such a way that the procurer receives relevant market information and tenders for the best way to solve the problem at hand. The projects proposed are aimed at improved dissemination of information. The obstacles are generic for public procurement of innovationand are so to speak generic for all the Nordic countries.
Nordic Added Value:
Development of the field of public procurement of innovation within the health care sector
Development of networks and contribution to dissemination of information, best practice and results
Encouragment of health organizations to integrate innovation in their thinking when they procure
Contribution to new skills and changed mindset among procures in order to use procurement as a strategic tool for development
Encouragment of cross-border cooperation both among health procurers and among suppliers
Raise of awareness at management level of the potential in public procurement
Creation of market opportunities and development of ideas and companies, with a particular emphasis on SMEs
Development/dissemination of tools and methods for procurement of innovation
The purpose of the project is to strengthen the exchange of knowledge, co-creation and cooperation in focused networks for procurers and suppliers in the Nordic region. The objective of the project is twofold:
To contribute to the development of public services, with particular emphasis on the health care sector, by encouraging public procurement and innovation
To contribute to the progress of the Nordic supplier industry through closer contact with public buyers for new innovative, effective and competitive solutions
For more information, please visit the official project sites.
Source: Nordic Innovation