There is always enormous pressure on the healthcare supply chain. Particularly, the supply chain for the medical device industry is being more and more complex especially with companies aligning their product portfolio with the changing ecosystem. Strengthening supply chain is essential. The pressure points are to be identified and worked upon to support the medical device world’s commitment to steady improvement in the system. 

Problems:

  1. An unexpected or once-in-a-lifetime event which causes demand and supply to fluctuate wildly is known as supply chain shock.It can result in either decreased or increased supply.There are unforeseen changes in price as well. As the COVID-19 took over, manufacturers experienced a high demand for medical supplies. Big disruptions to raw materials and labor shortages were adverse effects. Cybersecurity, counterparty issues, macroeconomic policy changes, sudden climate change, etc. could be equally contributing factors.
  2. Medical devices are subject to certain regulations and manufacturing practices related to purchasing, receiving, designing, producing, storing, testing, labeling, etc. All these procedures have to be compliant. Every device must have a unique device identifier. Now, there are supply chains having components that are not end products. So, the situation becomes tricky.
  3. Adopting modern tools is an evident necessity. Many entities still rely on inefficient manual systems. With such tools comes a new set of compliance requirements, the cost and efforts.

Steps To Be Taken To Strengthen Supply Chain:

  1. Predictive analytics to enable data-driven decisions. 
  2. Investment in technology such as smart sensors, advanced labeling techniques, etc. for improved traceability and visibility.
  3. Supplier diversified portfolio. 
  4. Efficient data analytics to streamline processes and improve functions.

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