A Look At The Logistical Demands Of The COVID-19 Vaccine
With the long-awaited COVID-19 vaccines approved by governments for distribution, people have been keeping an eye on the logistics industry, for good reason.
The COVID-19 vaccines require specific travel conditions; for example, the Pfizer vaccine has to be kept at -70° C/-94°C to remain viable, which can be challenging for any company like Titan Transline, on top of having to be scheduled properly, as the vaccines are only viable for five days.
Several logistics industry observers discussed the logistical demands of the vaccine, and what the logistics industry would have to deal with in order to ensure that this massive undertaking goes smoothly.
Clarendon Capital Operating Partner John Larkin says that the new vaccines have to be transported at cold temperatures, which is problematic due to the fact that the refrigerated capacity of the logistics sector is already a bit strained. Complicating matters are the different conditions that the vaccines need.
Larkin also talked about other key issues related to vaccine distribution that the logistics industry will have to deal with, with supply chain security being of the utmost importance to make sure that the vaccines remain in good condition and to ensure the inoculation of the people most in need.
Labor in the logistics industry might also be a gating factor, as the industry’s already dealing with a bit of a staff shortage. Moreover, the shopping season traditionally ramps up around the time when the vaccines’ are to be distributed.
Supply Chain Consultant and LM Contributing Editor Brooks Bentz say that the fact that the vaccine is manufactured in Europe, means that air transport is important. Following that, is what has to be done with the vaccine once it finally lands on the ground, which means that’ll it’ll probably need to go through some form of distribution network first, starting with hospitals, then moving onto big centers like CVS, then moving on to home delivery around late January 2021, when conditions are a bit better.
The airfreight and the lift capacity are expected to be keys to ensure that the vaccines are moved properly, safely, and efficiently. As a result, experts are expecting that these parts of the logistics industry will be premiums into 2021 as the vaccine is rolled out.