Dr. Suman De, Head of Government Healthcare Solutions and Chief Medical Officer at Infosys Public Solutions, was recently interviewed by Logistica & Transportes Hoje, a European journal for logistics, supply chain, and distribution services, regarding the logistical concerns of vaccine distribution. Dr. Suman De’s expertise has been instrumental to our own vaccine management solution—IVM—and our continued innovation in the healthcare technology space.
We are thrilled to see Suman’s insights put on center stage for such a critical topic, and we wanted to share some of the highlights here. You can also read the original article in full here.
1. Vaccine Transit Challenges
“Dry ice is such a dangerous material that it cannot be transported by air or water, it must be on the road. This poses a challenge in relation to distribution in more remote areas. Several days of vaccine viability may be lost due to this problem of traffic and transport, availability of dry ice, the right containers, and all that. It is a tremendous challenge to manage logistics. It will not be just accommodating in one place and keeping it at the right temperature. It is ensuring all the variables when putting the lots in transit.” —Dr. Suman De
2. Technology to Help with Vaccine Prioritization
“The role of technology will be great. That is the reason why Infosys developed a solution, the vaccine management platform. … It is a global solution. I have been talking to our team in the UK, I spoke to New Zealand, Australia, I am in contact with an Irish organization. Nobody was spared in this pandemic and the vaccine is our last hope. Everyone will have to do this vaccination campaign. Although we have started to design the solution for the North American market, we are currently in global talks and talking to about 15 to 20 countries.” —Dr. Suman De
3. Vaccine is Only as Good as the Logistics Supporting It
“It is the first time that we are in this unique situation. We have never had the experience of working with an ultra-cold chain like this. There are some specialized drugs that need it, and maybe organ transport, but not on this giant scale, where we have to vaccinate the whole world and we need to keep a vaccine at -18º, -20º, or -30º. It is a lesson we have learned. The technology is bringing new ideas, such as these IoT monitoring devices and the blockchain as a platform, so as not to compromise the security of the data and they are immutable from the source to the final recipient. … Looking at all aspects, the development of the vaccine by pharmaceutical companies is a scientific breakthrough. But how to manage it? How to monitor vaccines? How to manage the temperature, the cold chain, the logistics? These are operational requirements for vaccines to be effectively administered to the population. We can have an excellent vaccine with 95% effectiveness, but if we cannot administer it properly, monitoring and tracking performance is not effective in controlling the pandemic.” —Dr. Suman De
Learn more about vaccine management solutions for the current pandemic—and beyond—by downloading our ebook: The Complete Guide to COVID-19 Vaccine Management.