Many people need prescription drugs. According to recent research, seven out of ten people use prescribed medication. They must be properly warehoused because of the high medication turnover.
Bad storage can result in medication being lost or poisoned. You must learn how to properly package and store medication for their intended duration.
Medicine saves lives and is used to improve the quality of life for millions of people every day. When handling pharmaceuticals, warehouses should adhere to regulations.
The supply chain for medicine starts with the manufacturer and ends at the pharmacy. It’s transported to and stored in multiple warehouses throughout the country during this supply chain. But, medication storage is a different ballgame and requires different supply chains than other products.
Proper warehousing ensures that the drugs are safe from contamination. Patients who are waiting for their medications at the end can only benefit if they are kept in good condition.
What is Pharmaceutical Warehousing?
Proper storage is essential before drugs can be distributed to their intended recipients. The FDA states that pharmaceuticals must be properly controlled to prevent counterfeits and interfere with distribution channels. Everyone involved in drug warehousing should adhere to the CGMP.
These CGMP are applicable to everyone involved in the medicine supply chain. This includes manufacturers, warehouses and distributors. The CGMP includes the requirement that all drugs are properly stored to prevent contamination. Regular cleaning and inspection of the areas in which they are stored is necessary.
A second standard is that all drugs must be classified into lots and assigned a barcode to allow for traceability. You should also label drugs as rejected, under quarantine or approved for shipping.
The procedures for distribution of each drug are now clearly documented for everyone to see. In case of recall, make sure you include the procedure that should be followed. Also, include the written procedure for how each medication is kept.
Respecting these CGMP standards is one of the biggest challenges in pharmaceutical warehousing. There are many different types of drugs. Every drug has its own storage and handling requirements. You must ensure that your warehouse is able to accommodate all drug requirements.
To avoid causing damage to the drug, it is important to monitor the temperature in the warehouse at all times. This is why pharmaceutical warehousing can be a difficult field to manage and costly. It is difficult to store all of the drugs. This adds on cost.
There are still things you can do that will increase your storage capacity and efficiency.
Tips to Improve Pharmaceutical Warehousing
1. Proper Space Planning
A warehouse can hold thousands of drugs. Each drug has its own storage requirements. A plan for your storage space should be prepared before you begin planning your pharmaceutical warehouse. You should know that drugs require a dry, cool place to store them and that some may need to be frozen.
You can only make your warehouse run efficiently by planning it from the beginning. Staff can also learn about the supply chain requirements from the start. You can also note when you require more space or less space to manage an increase in inventory.
2. Demand Planning
Although pharmaceuticals are required all year, it is possible to plan around the demand. You can stockpile cold medication during flu season. The same goes for allergy season. Your supply chain will run more efficiently if you plan for high demand times.
3. Bin Locations Concept
Pharmaceutic warehouses can be large and difficult to navigate. Bin location can be used to guide you through the various levels. Staff who need to locate a warehouse’s exact location can use bin locations.
4. Regular staff training
Technology is rapidly changing the pharmaceutical warehouse. Regular training is a great way to keep your staff current with changing times. Training helps staff learn about new software and the changes that are coming to the warehouse. It’s a great way to brainstorm solutions to problems that may be affecting your warehouse.
5. Cross-Docking: Take advantage
Some pharmaceuticals do not require extended storage. Cross-docking is a method where drugs are delivered and shipped immediately. This works well for high-demand medication.
6. Select a Partner for Pharmaceutical Warehousing
Each pharmaceutical warehouse operation needs the best logistic partner. You will notice a smooth operation once you have found the right partner. They must fulfill certain requirements when looking for a partner. They must be able to run a transparent and legitimate operation, as dealing with drugs can be very sensitive.
Their trucks should be kept clean and in good condition at all times. Because drugs are sensitive, they can easily be contaminated and could prove to be deadly to the recipients. Also, make sure that the logistics partner you choose is up-to-date with security measures to ensure safe shipping.
7. Proper Inventory Tracking
Because pharmaceuticals are sensitive, it is important to track inventory in transit and storage. The best inventory tracking system is essential for the supply chain. It allows your staff to keep track of all the items coming in and going out.
Because pharmaceutical warehousing requires a lot of expertise, it is more difficult. To ensure that the supply chain runs smoothly, it is important to work with the right logistics partner. Look for pharmaceutical warehousing partners here.
Before you dive into the details, make sure to calculate the cost of setting it up. Next, plan the setup of the entire warehouse. It doesn’t matter how big the operation is, it is important to plan the warehouse properly.