Meet a New Member of the 114th Congress: Earl “Buddy” Carter (R-GA)

Inside HSCA examines new members of the 114th Congress who have a background in healthcare or who could have an impact on the supply chain.

Buddy Carter, a pharmacist and businessman from Pooler, Georgia, defeated Democratic opponent Brian Reese in the race for Georgia’s 1st Congressional District. Carter will be replacing outgoing U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, who has held the seat for the past 22 years.

Carter has been a pharmacist for over 30 years and will be the only pharmacist in the 114th Congress. He owns and operates three pharmacies in his District and has also worked as a consultant for Omnicare, Inc.

One of Carter’s core campaign messages was focusing on healthcare reform, which he says starts with repealing the Affordable Care Act. In a statement on his campaign website, Carter notes the healthcare system can be improved by “bringing real conservative reform with market-driven solutions.” One way he plans on accomplishing this is by working to allow insurance companies to compete across state lines, which he argues will improve competition and lower costs.

In August, Carter said it is extremely important to have leaders who “have been in the trenches on healthcare issues before and [who] understand the importance of the relationship between a healthcare service provider and the patient.”

In addition to healthcare, Carter is interested in tackling the nation’s long-term debt and fixing the tax code when he gets to Washington.

Working on legislation that addresses these issues won’t be anything new for Carter—before running for the U.S. House of Representatives, he was a State Senator in Georgia from 2009-2014 and a State Representative from 2005-2009. Prior to that, Carter served as mayor of Pooler, Georgia, from 1996-2004.

For more background information on incoming Rep. Buddy Carter, visit his campaign website here.


GPOs Taking Steps to Help Hospitals, Healthcare Providers Combat Ebola Virus

The Healthcare Supply Chain Association (HSCA) recently released the findings of a membership survey detailing the actions that healthcare group purchasing organizations (GPOs) are taking to help hospitals, healthcare providers and suppliers prepare to treat the Ebola virus. All GPOs surveyed, including the five largest GPOs, reported taking action to help increase hospital and healthcare provider preparedness.

“GPOs are the sourcing and purchasing partners to virtually all American hospitals, and HSCA-member GPOs are each taking innovative, proactive steps to ensure that hospitals are fully equipped to handle Ebola-related issues,” said HSCA President Curtis Rooney. “From disseminating information on product availability and alternate product sourcing to governmental agency collaboration and 24/7 emergency support, GPOs are committed to enhancing supply chain preparedness so that hospitals can focus on treating and preventing the spread of this disease.”

Specific steps taken by GPOs to respond to hospital need and to help address the Ebola virus have included:

  • Increased communication with members and suppliers to identify product availability and any potential shortages of supplies;
  • Establishment of 24/7 emergency command center;
  • Development of an Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever Clinical Resource Guide, which includes guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO);
  • Around-the-clock monitoring of national situation;
  • Collaboration with relevant government agencies at the Federal, state and municipal levels.
In addition, all or multiple GPOs surveyed reported taking the following steps to help address the public health threat of Ebola:

  • Creating a centralized response system;
  • Conducting full-scale exercises of emergency management programs;
  • Working to ensures access to “just-in-time” supply chain products and services;
  • Working with suppliers to identify product shortages or delays and with wholesalers and distributors to identify products in warehouses and potential shortfalls;
  • Keeping members and customers updated on current CDC guidelines;
  • Assessing and augmenting existing preparedness programs;
  • Serving as a clearinghouse of product information, educational programs and treatment protocols.
“Emergency situations such as the recent Ebola crisis and the surge in demand for personal protective equipment following the change in the CDC’s baseline protection recommendations highlight the important role that GPOs play in helping to ensure access to critical products and services for healthcare workers,” added Rooney.

To learn more about HSCA and its GPO members, click here