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Four Risk-Mitigation Strategies for Temperature-Sensitive Shipments

For many products, 2°C is all that separates an efficacious medicine from becoming spoiled inventory and a costly write-off

One fourth of all healthcare products today are temperature sensitive, and that number is growing. Nearly half of the world’s top-selling drugs need temperature-controlled transportation and storage. And the use of biologics is growing dramatically; already there are more than 900 biologics for more than 100 diseases. That adds up to a lot of cold chain packages moving through transportation networks. And a lot of risk.

Here are four strategies that can help you mitigate that risk:

Strategy #1: Use packaging optimized for known ambient profiles

Packaging is the front line — and a potential fault line — for healthcare companies concerned about temperature-sensitive products. Yet, only about one third of logistics professionals make it a top priority and understand the cost implications of selecting the right packaging solutions. Surprisingly, many manufacturers have never applied scientific assessment to their packaging design. “Optimizing packaging can help reduce spoilage of temperature-sensitive products in transit,” says Susan Li, Manager of UPS Temperature True® Packaging.

In their study of ambient environmental conditions in shipping, UPS gathered real-world information, using temperature-recording devices in actual shipments. Using these results, they created ambient shipping lane temperature profiles to inform healthcare packaging decisions. Ultimately, they developed a range of convenient, prequalified UPS Temperature True® Packaging, so now companies can choose a package design that’s right for each products’ temperature requirements and the environment through which it travels. This has led to measurably better, more efficient (and cost-effective) product protection. That’s good news for those manufacturers — and great news for their patients.


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