What Does the Future Hold for Pharmaceutical Supply Chain in 2021?

Pharmaceutical supply chain

The pharmaceutical supply chain in 2021 will require innovative solutions

Pharmaceutical supply chain management has become more complex and imperative in today’s digital world scenario. It holds the life-saving promise of human beings and demands the participation of distinct stakeholders including pharma manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, customers, and regulatory agencies. In the face of COVID-19, supply chains have majorly been disrupted owing to nation-wide restrictions around the world. This supply chain turmoil has left challenges in the pharmaceutical industry, requiring to reconsider supply chain management and innovative solutions.

The pandemic has also propelled pharma companies to rethink how to manage clinical trials and treat patients in hospitals and their homes. Most pharma companies have complex supply chains that are under-utilized, inefficient and ill-equipped to handle the sort of products coming down the pipeline. Since 2020 has a mixed impact on the industry, the year 2021 is predicted to bring new opportunities for pharmaceutical companies and their supply chain management as well.

Here are some trends shaping the pharmaceutical supply chain in 2021.


Emerging Technologies Will Bolster Supply Chain Efficiency

As technological advances are relentlessly on the rise, they will aid pharma companies to manufacture and distribute a wider and more complex range of medicines. Integrating artificial intelligence and machine learning technology during drug discovery can substantially stimulate go-to-market time for new drugs. The implementation of DSCSA (Drug Quality and Security Act) mandates has opened up the way to turn the traditional pharmaceutical supply chain towards digital.


Rise of Sustainable Packaging

Eco-friendly efforts in pharma packaging is a crucial step to reduce waste during drug development. Sustainable packaging will significantly minimize plastic usage in packaging design and reducing carbon footprint across the packaging supply chain. Sustainable packaging is typically designed to use materials that have a lesser impact on the environment. This sort of packaging can be reusable or recyclable that reduces reliance on the packaging that is used once. Similar to other businesses that find new, cost-effective ways to prioritize sustainability, the future can rely on technology in pharma packaging.


Innovation Edge

Pharmaceutical companies today are actively looking into the next paradigm to deliver the promise of enhanced treatments and gain a competitive advantage. Thinking predictive supply chain could bring the potential for a superior patient-caregiver experience. To enable harness the value of such models, pharma companies must build advanced analytical models along with the ability to understand the causes and effects that will make their predictions successful. As the COVID-19 pandemic has a significant impact on every industry, it has transformed pharmaceutical supply chains. To navigate any challenges of this pandemic, companies will need to have look at innovative solutions.

In a nutshell, the pharmaceutical supply chain will continue to responsible for the distribution of prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, generics, as well as biologics that have different handling needs and operational objectives. According to the report, the global pharmaceuticals market is forecast to grow from US$934.8 billion in 2017 to US$1170 billion in 2021, at a CAGR of 5.8 percent.

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