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Source: Sonoco ThermoSafe
There is an impending need for experience and expertise when it comes to importing and re-distributing the essential medicines, diagnostic panels, reagents with exceedingly short expiration, vaccines, and other biological products to austere locations. The logistics to supply to these regions are complicated and highly challenging. In many cases, it is necessary to identify and outsource these services to a qualified and highly experienced logistics and fulfillment organization.
The risks of supplying critical, temperature sensitive products to these underdeveloped and remote locations are numerous and can include:
Collectively, the above pitfalls contribute to travel times often exceeding 21 days and cold chain shipment failures of 20–25%, posing a serious risk to health, quality of life, and the safety of our citizens abroad.
CHSi enlisted the expertise of Coldchain Technology Services of San Antonio, Texas. CTS, an exclusive partner of Sonoco ThermoSafe, operates cGMP storage, reclamation and fulfillment facilities specializing in the use of high performance, reclaimable, and reusable temperature-controlled shipping solutions. Their discrete customer-directed fulfillment services presented an opportunity to mitigate many of the risks inherent to the logistical environment facing CHSi.
CHSi needed an overall shipping process adaptable to the dynamic conditions of its diverse business areas. Transit times to some remote areas of the world can be very unpredictable, due to local laws and regulations, and cultural and political factors. CTS demonstrated and recommended the component driven nature of the ThermoSafe Greenbox® shipping system. The dimensions of the shippers, ease of assembly, range of maintainable environments, duration, and the nonhazardous nature of their PureTemp® phase change materials were all seen as advantageous attributes for CHSi. Sonoco ThermoSafe’s reusable product solutions and CTS’s reclamation experience, with hundreds of thousands of shippers recovered, along with a qualified system of sanitization and fitness performance testing prior to reuse, worked together to develop a closed loop system for using and recovering the most advanced and secure thermal management system available for moving critical temperature-sensitive products around the globe.
CTS’s comprehensive SHIP2Q® process (Safe Hygienic Irradiation Performance Process & Qualification), would ensure fitness, thermal reliability, and cleanliness of the system components within the manufacturer specifications equal to new “off-the-shelf” shipper systems. The systematic SHIP2Q® process meets all cGMP and cGDP compliance standards and generates shipper specific track & trace documentation key to any deployment and reuse (learn more at www.thermosafe.com/reclamation). SHIP2Q® applied a system of control over the recovery and reuse phase of the logistics loop. CHSi is able to recover and reuse the Greenbox® shipper, amortizing its total cost across numerous shipments making it cost-neutral in the first few cycles. Some specific Greenbox® shippers have made a 16,000-mile loop more than 20 times (or 320,000 miles).
The switch from active refrigeration units, dry ice containers and inferior passive package components to the Greenbox® shipping system also allows CTS/CHSi to use commercial freight carriers and multiple aircraft equipment instead of expensive specialty carriers and dedicated service providers previously required. Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. (www.chsimedical.com) has extensive experience in all of the medical service areas. CHSi capabilities have been built through solid performance in providing this array of medical services to both commercial and government customers. Since 2007, CHSi has been a dynamic presence in support of medical services operations in the Middle East and other international locations. CHSi services focus on Level I medical support to maintain the health and medical readiness of the workforce.
Together, Sonoco ThermoSafe, CTS and CHSi have designed and implemented a closed-loop fulfillment and reclamation solution that extends more than 16,000 miles and confidently boasts a 99% return rate for the shippers.
Download a PDF version of this paper here.