Northwood Hygiene Products have begun a new partnership with the NHS for the supply of some paper hygiene products.
With NHS budgets under severe and ongoing pressure, every opportunity to save money by reducing costs is being placed under wider and ever increasing scrutiny.
Of course there are other criteria to be considered other than cost alone. There is no point in being price competitive if there is no guarantee of continuity of supply. This a key factor in Northwood Hygiene Products’ success.
Their management strategy of upstream vertical integration means they can control their own supply chain much more than most other paper hygiene suppliers in the UK. From the newly operational purpose designed 250,000 square foot site in Telford, consistency, quality control and reliability are able to be closely monitored.
From the collection of its own waste paper requirement, its subsequent recycling and conversion in its own mills and on to the manufacture of the final product in its own plant, all of which are delivered by its own transport fleet, Northwood Hygiene Products are much better placed than most to ride the wilder swings in the markets.
It is this increased depth of resource and reach that has helped the company to qualify to become a member of the Framework Agreement that facilitates the purchase of materials by the individual hospitals without having to go to individual tender on larger orders.
However, the ultimate key consideration is and will remain, the capability of delivering comparable quality product at the very best price. It is these superficially small marginal gains on such essential and extremely high volume disposable items that can and do make the kind of annual cost savings that are a major a contributor to the longer term survival of the National Health Service.
For Northwood Hygiene Products this has meant that the new partnership currently covers twelve paper hygiene products. These encompass toilet tissue, hand towels, couch rolls and centre feeds. Essential to maintaining hygiene standards by reducing the incidence of bacterial transference, the hand towels especially are an intrinsic and vital part of all hospital hygiene regimes. At a time of year when norovirus and ‘flu are prevalent across the country, good hand hygiene, which prevents the main cause of spreading diseases has a particularly important role to play in keeping hospitals open and operating. Encouraging doctors, nursing staff and even visitors to both wash their hands thoroughly and just as importantly, dry them thoroughly means ensuring the provision of adequate facilities.
Though it has to be said that hand washing is often not always as frequent amongst NHS staff as would be desired, often due to busy people working under pressure, one reason for not doing so should never, ever be the cost consideration.
It is Northwood Hygiene Products commitment that they will continue to source, convert and manufacture comparable quality paper hygiene products at the most competitive prices to ensure that no one in the NHS ever feels that the use of one of these products is never anything but necessary and not an indulgence that should be avoided.