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Vaccine Distribution and Safety

How does vaccine distribution relate to key operations and supply chain management questions including: quality management, new product development and forecasting?

Could more vaccine be made available if the government or patients simply paid more money for it? What are the pluses and minuses of producing extra at an increased cost?

How should the government and producers balance safety - i.e. carefully assessing the vaccine so that few unintended consequences occur - versus speed of getting the vaccine to patients?

Include references from at least three articles or journals.

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1. How does vaccine distribution relate to key operations and supply chain management questions including: quality management, new product development, and forecasting?

Vaccine distribution has the same operational and supply issues that any other business product encounters. Vaccine manufacturers must be able to provide a quality product in a timely manner. However, vaccine manufacturers have the additional responsibilities to provide adequate vaccine at a responsible price. With influenza vaccine, manufacturers must be able to provide an adequate supply of vaccine that will respond to the current circulating strains and changing government guidelines (Medlock & Galvani, 2009). Over half of the vaccine purchased in the U.S. is purchased by the government. While the government purchases over half the vaccine manufactured, about 70 percent is given in the private sector through the Vaccines For Children and Medicaid programs. Vaccine purchased by the government is kept at a lower cost and fewer and fewer manufacturers are in the vaccine production business. (Every Child By Two, 2011).

So, even though there is a decided public health advantage in the manufacturing of vaccine, the costs associated with production, changing guidelines, and time constraints have led vaccine production to be less than lucrative for private industry. When vaccination is not a money making endeavor, manufacturers will be reluctant to develop new products and promote production time to vaccines.

2. Could more vaccine be made available if the government and patients simply paid more for it? What are the pluses and minuses of producing extra ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses vaccine distribution, increasing charges for vaccine, and vaccine safety.

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