This project builds the capacity of staff working with humanitarian organizations, including international organizations and local NGOs, to manage health product supply chains in humanitarian settings. These staff will, in turn, support partners, local organizations and other health program managers in the field to improve health product availability for people affected by rapid-onset disasters—such as earthquakes, volcanoes, and floods—and slow-onset, complex emergencies and crises, including drought and conflict.
Effective supply chains, managed by skilled logisticians with experience along the relief-to-development continuum, are instrumental to ensuring comprehensive responses that meet growing and evolving humanitarian needs and deliver life-saving health products to the people who need them in emergencies.
Inefficiencies in storage, distribution, and delivery of health products—including waste, expiry, damage, theft, and stock outs—are risks inherent in managing supply chains are exacerbated in humanitarian emergencies when multiple organizations oversee product distribution, especially in a rapidly changing, unstable environment. Even when they have expertise managing other types of products such as equipment and non-medical commodities, healthcare workers and NGO staff that operate logistics operations in emergency settings many times lack the specific skills to manage health products.
By developing better supply chain management resources, building capacity, sharing, and institutionalizing the use of these resources, this project, funded by USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA),will lead to better management of healthcare supply chains in humanitarian settings, ultimately making health products available to affected populations who need them the most.
Through JSI this project has created a community of practice across many of the largest humanitarian NGOs that is linking to other networks and coalitions in the United Nations and international community to harmonize and improve the standards of humanitarian supply chain management.
JSI has facilitated a highly participatory, iterative, and user-centered approach to help identify supply chain solutions so that individuals who provide healthcare services in humanitarian and disaster response situations can better serve people in need.
By building strong and trusting relationships with key partners in this sector, JSI is ensuring that the resources developed help health and supply chain managers to do their jobs better.