Failure of the global health system supply chain can place both clinicians and patients at great risk, with devastating outcomes when products are not available or when supply chain processes are interrupted and do not function optimally.

This paper, Key Characteristics of a Fragile Healthcare Supply Chain: Learning from a Pandemic, describes the key characteristics of health supply chain fragility, which has been informed by the experiences and perspectives of health and health supply chain leaders and stakeholders in Canadian health systems during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Identifying the causes and characteristics of supply chain fragility can inform new strategies and approaches for strengthening healthcare supply chain to better support pandemic management and health system performance.

Click here to read the article, published in Longwoods.

The article authors are Anne W Snowdon, BScN, MSc, PhD, Michael Saunders, PhD and Alexandra Wright, MPA.

Anne W. Snowdon is the scientific director and chief executive officer of SCAN Health, an international knowledge translation platform that engages health system leaders and supply chain experts to advance global capacity to adopt and scale best practices in the healthcare supply chain to offer traceability of products and care processes from bench to bedside to patient outcomes. She is a full professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the Odette School of Business, University of Windsor in Windsor, ON.

Michael Saunders is a postdoctoral fellow in the Supply Chain Advancement Network in Health (SCAN Health) at the University of Windsor in Windsor, ON.

Alexandra Wright is a research analyst in the Supply Chain Advancement Network in Health (SCAN Health), University of Windsor. She is also a PhD candidate at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto in Toronto, ON.