Emergency/Pandemic Preparedness

Background

Public health events—both natural and manmade—occur regularly. It is important the country have consistent and sufficient funding for public health surveillance efforts, training and protection of healthcare workers and patients, vaccine and diagnostic development and invests in the healthcare supply chain which supports all these initiatives.

Medical products are critical to any emergency or pandemic response. Ensuring the elasticity of the supply chain is essential to a prepared national healthcare system and is stronger through a public and private partnership because all entities with a role in preparedness depend on the same supply chain.

What Members Need to Know

The Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act (PAHPRA) is up for reauthorization in 2018. HIDA Government Affairs is working with congressional champions on language that builds on supply chain lessons from past events to support future public health responses. Medical products are critical to any emergency or pandemic response. Ensuring the elasticity of the supply chain is essential to a prepared national healthcare system and is stronger through a public and private partnership. A national preparedness strategy must include:

  • Stable government funding for public health programs
  • Transparent communications between public and private partners
  • Formal public/private supply chain partnership

​​​Specifically, PAHPRA Reauthorization should direct HHS through the Strategic National Stockpile to create a commercial “cushion” of key products for preparedness through a private/public partnership. Operationalizing a product inventory process to determine need, what the commercial market can support and identify gaps is necessary to ensure continuity. Key aspects should include directions for:  

  • SNS and other federal agencies along with commercial partners work to understand current market volume, capacity and viable product substitutions/alternatives.
  • SNS and other federal agencies understand key manufacturing criteria that impact ability and capacity to quickly “ramp up”. Examples of these criteria include the availability of raw materials, shelf life, manufacturing complexity and capacity, size of product and lead times.
  • A robust education and communications plan to ensure all partners as well as healthcare providers from first responders to hospitals understand the response plan, the role of all stakeholders, the types of products needed for various scenarios and how products will be distributed during a response.

HIDA works to:

  • Create government partnerships that foster coordination between medical products distributors and federal stakeholders, including the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Facilitate working relationships between members and other industry stakeholder organizations, including the American Hospital Association, the Red Cross, and the Joint Commission.
  • Provide information and resources to distributors, healthcare providers and others. Resources including a listing of scenario-specific medical products and supplies, state emergency contacts, and emergency preparedness planning guides.
Outlook

Through constructive dialogue the supply chain and governmental agencies can learn from past pandemics and implement programs to ensure that availability of certain types of medical products would meet immediate pandemic response needs. Creating a continuous and certain elevated level of demand for these types of products requires experience in warehousing, maintaining and refreshing product in a timely manner as well as logistical capabilities to redirect product if necessary.

Resources
HIDA has created factsheets for your use and set up information clearinghouse enters  on specific topics as the need arises.

Resource Centers

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Press Contact:

Jeff Girardi »
Director, Industry Affairs
703-838-6110

Government Affairs Contact:

Mary Beth Spencer »
Manager, Government Affairs
703-838-6133