I recently spent some time in Tanzania looking at the “last mile” of logistics of medical supplies in the country. The project focused on assessing the challenges with reaching health clinics and dispensaries, particular in rural areas. Below are some issues to consider when drafting your “last mile” strategy:
Territory and road infrastructure – Gain a clear understanding of the road conditions and travel time required for delivery. Also, consider seasonality and how the rainy reason will affect your distribution. Not all roads are passable during the rainy season and your mode of transport, e.g. four wheel drive, may also change. Road infrastructure and seasonality will also impact your network design, e.g. designing routes.
Service delivery point growth – In a number of African markets there are aggressive plans to expand and increase the footprint of health facilities. It is important to understand what impact this will have on the supply chain or pipeline.
Distribution centers (DCs) or cross docking – In Africa, distribution distances tend to be large and DCs limited. Overnight routes and driver per diems can increase costs and reduce truck utilization. Evaluate the need for more DCs and the role cross docking can play in streamlining distribution processes and reducing cost deliveree รีวิว.
Demand planning – Tanzania has moved from a push system (demand determined at central level) to a pull system (demand determined at health facility level). Health workers at health facilities are responsible for submitting demand requirements (or R&R forms). Common problems include delays in submitting forms and limited capacity or capability to complete forms. It is important to identify and understand bottlenecks. Determine what can be done to simplify the process, e.g. limit the pull to certain Stock Keeping Units, and help reduce the workload for health workers, e.g. introduce regional demand coordinators.