- Supply chains must be more robust –The U.S. needs a pandemic-oriented infrastructure that combines state and federal government planning with the commercial supply chain to create and maintain larger reserve inventories that can mitigate sizable disruption.
- Surge manufacturing must be expanded and supported – The U.S. should develop and maintain production infrastructure that can ramp up quickly to meet surge demand.
- Sourcing must be more diversified – The U.S. needs to rebalance its dependence on distant sources and increase the share of sourcing done in the U.S. and closer to home.
- Supply chains must be aligned to end users – A comprehensive preparedness system should align end users to specific supply chains to avoid bidding wars for supplies.
Emphasizing one specific unforeseen challenge that has occurred during COVID-19 with the emergence of a parallel marketplace, featuring fly-by-night, opportunistic brokers, O’Neill states, “Due to their inexperience in healthcare supply chains, brokers sourced products of unknown quality, including counterfeit products, from unknown vendors and auctioned these products to the highest bidder.”
O’Neill said this created a pricing frenzy that artificially inflated the cost of the authentic product, which brokers often failed to deliver.
HIDA has proposed a framework for a public-private partnership around a pandemic response infrastructure, which was submitted to the ITC and can be found on HIDA’s website:
The full text of HIDA’s testimony to the ITC is also available:
Read Full Testimony►