An essential component of the pharmaceutical supply chain is an unbroken cold chain network. Pharma products requiring cold-chain management can be broadly classified into 3 buckets –
- Vaccines, Insulin and Biologics – This group representing roughly 10% of Indian pharma market requiring stringent temperature management.
- Balance domestic market - Several leading companies are adopting the practice of having 100% of their product basket move through temperature controlled supply chain.
- Exports – Bulk of the drugs meant for exports are required to be handled in temperature controlled environment
Drugs lose their potency if any part of the cold chain gets broken. Oral Polio Vaccine may lose 4-13% of its potency per day at 25oC and 26-37% of potency at 37oC. Similarly improper storage of insulin decreases potency and hence the pharmacological action of insulin. It is said that it is better to not vaccinate than to administer a dose of vaccine that has been mishandled.
At Rivigo we’ve come up with a robust temperature integrity frame-work to ensure unparalleled reliability in temperature control during long distance transportation. Our 3 building blocks are -
- Unique driver management model – We’ve a unique driver-relay model where drivers change over every 200-250 km. This removes the risk of drivers tampering with the reefer control. In every change over point the vehicle gets physically audited before being handed over to the next driver. The driver relay model also ensures the vehicle is always on the run and never parked in unsupervised places thereby eliminating any external risk
- Technology for temperature monitoring and management – Technology is at the heart of our temperature integrity system. We’ve real-time remote temperature monitoring system in all reefer vehicles. We’ve developed customized alert system where-by any temperature deviation gets escalated to the action teams. In addition we’ve 24x7 central monitoring team that monitors the alerts and co-ordinates with all stake holders to act on temperature deviations. Our next frontier is remote temperature management. We’re piloting technology that enables management of reefer temperature from a remote control-tower. This would completely eliminate the human errors that crop up when the control is in the various drivers’ hand
- Pan India service network – We’ve the widest service network in the country. We’ve 40 hubs across the country spaced every 200-250km, manned with service staff to take care of all preventive and break-down issues. This eliminates the threat from a black-swan event. The biggest risk that the pharma companies face is the one in million risk of a reefer break-down in a remote location. This puts products worth crores at risk. In our model, cargo is always within 2-3 hours of physical reach from the nearest hub.
Adopting a zero-error cold chain network gives a tremendous competitive advantage to the pharma companies while ensuring product efficacy and eliminating adverse events.