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Logistik in der Pandemie (shutterstock_545890090.2)

Logistics in the pandemic

Transparency across the entire supply chain is essential to ensure that expensive medicine is shipped quickly and reliably. This is not feasible without IT.

Transparency across the entire supply chain is essential to ensure that expensive medicine is shipped quickly and reliably. This is not feasible without IT.

The first vaccines to combat the COVID 19 pandemic should be delivered soon. In order to be successful, up to 10 billion doses of vaccine are required worldwide, which must be produced, made available and transported. Not an easy undertaking, there are several hurdles to overcome on the way to vaccination.

Worldwide supply of COVID-19 vaccines

For example, there is the securing of the cold chain. For some vaccines, strict temperature requirements of up to -80 °C must be observed in order not to jeopardize the effectiveness of the preparation. This alone poses new challenges for logisticians, as vaccines are usually distributed at a temperature of around 2 to 8 °C. Classical refrigerated transport delivers at temperatures between -18 and -24 °C. For the transport of vaccines this means that expensive transport boxes must be purchased to ensure these low temperatures. For economic reasons alone, these boxes must be in permanent use, if possible without idle times.

To ensure a global supply of COVID-19 vaccines, around 200,000 pallet transports, 15 million deliveries in cool boxes and an estimated 15,000 flights will be required in various supply chains. This is not a trivial undertaking with less and less air freight capacity available. In addition, high demands are placed on the freight capacities, which make supply chain planning much more difficult.

Tracking is a must

To be able to plan and act in the pandemic, a functioning logistics system with a strong physical logistics infrastructure and IT-supported supply chain transparency is essential. Knowing what is when and where is essential. This is the only way to plan deliveries and vaccination dates, book carriers, avoid empty coolers and long waiting times.

Tracking, as we know it from B2C, is becoming a must. Transparency of the individual units throughout the entire supply chain should be the measure of all things. The IT-supported monitoring of freight in real time brings light into the darkness and transparency about the individual stations. Tracked in real time, the shipper knows where the shipment is located and can provide information about the time of delivery at any time. In this way, binding dates for onward transport and even vaccination can be arranged in advance. The expensive special coolers are rarely left empty, but are in circulation almost continuously because they can be planned.

Relevant data in a dashboard

In order to ensure a quick and easy overview, it is a good idea to visualize the relevant data in a dashboard. Here, all information can be seen clearly, which package is where and when it is handed over to the next station, it reaches the next station on … to … its destination. This kind of visualization of the interrelationships highlights dependencies and facilitates decision-making.

In this way, a web-based platform on which all information on freight shipments is clearly arranged on a website makes a valuable contribution, even in the event of a pandemic.

Caption: 545890090 – Africa Studio