Dock-to-Arm: A Tricky Challenge for the Coronavirus Vaccine

Dock-to-Arm: A Tricky Challenge for the Coronavirus Vaccine

 

We have three promising vaccines. Now the challenge is to distribute them to the masses.

Public health officials and health systems around the world are gearing up for the distribution of the vaccines to their populations. There are opportunities for error at every step of the distribution process, from transportation of the Pfizer vaccine at extremely cold temperatures to final distribution in remote or rural areas. This massive undertaking is going to require synchronized efforts among many different parties. Success will depend on seamless coordination and trust.

 


Video Spotlight: The Race to Move a Cold Chain Vaccine to the Masses


This post is based on The Washington Post article, Now Comes the Hardest Part: Getting a Coronavirus Vaccine from Loading Dock to Upper Arm, by L.H. Sun and F. Stead Sellers, November 23, 2020, and the YouTube video, Inside the Cold, Complex World of Getting a Covid-19 Vaccine into Arms, by The Washington Post, November 24, 2020. Image source: LightField Studios / Getty Images.

Discussion Questions:

1. What are the challenges posed by this colossal distribution effort?

Guidance: There are many challenges associated with this effort. The Pfizer vaccine needs to be kept Continue reading

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The Rebirth of Ice Cream Deliveries

The Rebirth of Ice Cream Deliveries

In the early 1900s, salespeople delivered Wall’s ice cream on tricycles. Today, the concept is resurrected.

Thomas Wall started selling ice cream as a seasonal product designed to offset slumping sausage sales during the summer. Lever Brothers bought Wall’s company; it later merged with Maragarine Unie to become Unilever, a multinational corporation now known as the “king of ice cream.”  Sold in 63 countries, its ice cream brand portfolio now accounts for 19% of the global market. In 2020, as the pandemic lingered on and people spent more time at home, the company brought back the old concept of delivering ice cream on wheels, but this time directly to consumers’ homes. The company constantly innovates. Nevertheless, uncertainty about future lockdowns in 2021 makes the next big idea a little elusive.


Video Spotlight: How a Viennetta Is Made


This post is based on the CNN article, This Company Conquered the Ice Cream Market. Home Delivery Is the Final Frontier, by H. Ziadi, November 14, 2020, and the YouTube video, How a Viennetta Is Made, by d100965, November 17, 2013. Image source: M. Unal Ozmen / Shutterstock.

Discussion Questions:

1. Describe the evolution of ice Continue reading

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Pfizer’s Massive Vaccine Cold Chain

Pfizer’s Massive Vaccine Cold Chain

December 10, 2020

Pfizer is building an ambitious supply chain and distribution system to deliver hundreds of millions of doses of COVID-19 vaccine to vaccination sites in three days.

The vaccine is manufactured in Kalamazoo, Michigan and Puurs, Belgium at a rate of 7.6 million doses daily.  Shipping containers that can keep the loaded doses at a temperature of -100 Fahrenheit for up to 10 days are used to transport doses from the manufacturing sites to nearby airports as cargo on planes from FedEx, UPS, and DHL.

These carriers are also responsible for trucking doses from airports to vaccination sites such as hospitals.


Video Spotlight: 


This post is based on the Fierce Pharma article, Planes, trucks and ultracold boxes: Pfizer preps massive COVID-19 vaccine distribution effort, by Eric Sagonowsky, October 21, 2020; the NPR article, Why Does Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Need To Be Kept Colder Than Antarctica?, by Selena Simmons-Duffin, November 17, 2020, and the YouTube video in the Spotlight. Image source: Wright Studio/Shutterstock

Discussion Questions:

1. Is Pfizer’s vaccine supply chain transparent?  Explain.

Guidance: Pfizer’s vaccine supply chain has Continue reading

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