For the past year, I have watched the men and women of the healthcare distribution industry go above and beyond on a daily basis to make sure medicines, vaccines, PPE and other medical supplies reached patients and providers across the country. Their energy, determination and commitment have ensured a resilient supply chain during the most challenging days of the COVID-19 pandemic and a distribution network that has continued to deliver value each and every day.
These efforts serve as the focal point of HDA’s “Health Delivered” campaign, which we launched on March 22 with an ad spotlighting distributors’ tireless work to make sure American hospitals, pharmacies, providers and patients have the critical medicines and supplies they require.
For healthcare distributors, “Health Delivered” means working around the clock to connect 1,400 pharmaceutical manufacturers to more than 180,000 healthcare providers and delivering technology solutions and support to those treating patients on the frontlines. Also, in the face of a rapidly evolving crisis, health delivered means navigating the demands of COVID-19 by leaning into what we do best: leveraging our logistics expertise to deliver much-needed medicines and healthcare products safely, securely and efficiently.
From the earliest days of the pandemic, healthcare distributors have been on point, working with federal, state and local government agencies to distribute medical supplies, PPE and therapeutics while continuing to meet the daily healthcare needs of every American beyond the demands of COVID-19.
That critical engagement now extends to helping turn vaccines into lifesaving vaccinations during the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. McKesson is the centralized distributor of vaccines through the federal government, Cardinal Health and Morris & Dickson are supporting vaccine distribution in their home states, and AmerisourceBergen is the primary distributor of all COVID-19 related therapeutics authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration. Further, AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson, among others, are serving as network administrators in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination.
While the battle against COVID-19 is not yet over, we are approaching a critical turning point. Vaccine distribution and administration are surging, the country has surpassed the Biden administration’s initial goal of administering 100 million vaccinations during the first 100 days in office and President Biden recently announced that approximately 90 percent of U.S. adults will be eligible for vaccination by April 19.
I am proud of what our industry has accomplished amid a public health crisis on a scale that few of us have ever experienced, and I know that we are ready and able to do more.
Whatever comes next, healthcare distributors will be there to deliver the medicines and healthcare products that keep Americans healthy.
Chip Davis is the president and CEO of the Healthcare Distribution Alliance.