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  • Writer's pictureHoracio Enriquez


Supply chain management experts addressed the formidable, onerous challenges to ensure continuity and resiliency of supply and delivery of patient care, and provided suggestions on how to mitigate disruptions and save human lives now and in the future. The first of several round tables planned, the global discussion on April 8th provided great insights. View the Webinar: 

Esteemed speakers were:

  • Dr. Prashant Yadav, Affiliate Professor of Technology and Operations Management at INSEAD and the former Strategy Leader-Supply Chain at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

  • Dr. Khalid Shah, Senior Vice President and Head of Pharmaceutical and Biological Operations, Manu-facturing and Supply Chain, Exelixis

  • Horacio EnriquezChairman of Suppliers Council, BSMA

  • Franck Toussaint, Managing Director, Biolog Europe, and Executive Director & Co-Founder, BSMA Europe

  • with Dave Malenfant, EVP, Industry Liaison, BSMA, and former Vice President, Global Supply Chain, Alcon Laboratories facilitating


Single sourced materials and the dependency on a limited number of suppliers:

  • Organizations will have to re-evaluate reasons for single source manufacturing sites, particularly overseas.

Challenges with Nationalizing supply chains:

  • Fundamental barriers exist, such as multitude of data privacy constraints, international visibility of critical healthcare signals, inter-governmental collaboration, disparate systems and interoperability. How and who should lead the standardization efforts to provide basic harmonization?

  • How are companies reacting to suppliers abroad and local governments seizing production for national use?

  • We expect an increase in protectionist measures in order to ensure local production, as well as global trends toward increased mutual recognition of product standards and testing facilities to ensure easier sourcing from other countries.

Supply Chain Risk Management:

  • Why did we need the COVID-19 to highlight those SC risks and suddenly open our eyes? It may be the human impulse to ignore the colossal consequences and the absence of a national and international funding for the Black Swan event which affects all of us.

  • How do we unify Life Sciences in categorizing and harmonizing critical items so they are fast tracked in Strategic Sourcing and Logistics execution?

  • Organizations want geographical diversity, not just a shift from one geographically concentrated supply base to another, but how long will this take?

Do more with what we have and the need for re-design:

  • In light of the current shortage of PPE, we may want the ability to re-use certain essential PPE by disinfecting the PPE before using again, for example.  

  • It is incredibly concerning not to have the basic supplies to deal with the surge. Having more than one person connected to a single ventilator used to be almost unthinkable.

  • FDA gave a EUA for decontamination technology for PPE, including N95 Masks. There are other efforts underway for decontamination and re-use of PPE. 

API and Drug Effor

  • Supply chain strategies for API and drug products may adapt going forward, including longer shelf life stability testing, and more storage and inventory.

  • We may see a shift from China/APAC to North America and EMEA. This is seen as inevitable and has been needed for a long time now and more companies will move their sourcing and operations away from high-risk regions, such as APAC.

  • Some of the emergent US legislation going through the Senate will help and tax breaks for companies to move production to North America will help but may not be enough for some.


  • Worthwhile investigating alternative transportation modes, more capacity might be available for moving cargo and a resurgence of rail may take place in the Americas.

  • Fast Sea options might help where Air is not feasible on cost, however current Sea lead-times are long and extend into months in some cases.

  • Visibility of transportation capacity and stock levels is required for greater SCM efficacy.

We are extremely excited to announce that at the May 6 Virtual Round Table,Yossi Sheffi, Director, MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics will be joining the speakers above! Join us May 6th for the virtual round table sequel focused on Supply Chain Preparations for Reopening the Economy with Diagnostics and Testing as pre-requisites. If you cannot attend, to obtain the replay, you must still register:

Thank you! Horacio Enriquez, Chair, Supplier Council, BSMA

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