DHL launches next day 'direct to pharmacy' distribution service across AustraliaSydney, 11/14/2006, 10:30 AM CET
DHL Exel Supply Chain, part of the world's leading logistics company, has recently launched in Australia DHL Pharmacy Supply, the 'direct to pharmacy' pharmaceutical distribution business. Supported by a five-year contract DHL Pharmacy Supply will offer a 24 hour pharmaceutical distribution service to community pharmacies across the nation. Using its comprehensive distribution network, DHL Pharmacy Supply is contracted to deliver Government-subsidized Prescription Benefit Scheme (PBS) medicines from pharmaceutical manufacturers to approximately 5,000 pharmacies throughout metropolitan, regional and rural areas of Australia.
DHL Exel Supply Chain will deliver the 'direct to pharmacy' service by leveraging its existing pre-wholesale network capability and its storage and material handling systems in its new 20,000 sq m pharmaceutical distribution facility at Greystanes, Sydney. DHL has invested heavily in developing a national capability at Greystanes in order to deliver a more efficient order fulfillment pre-wholesale operation to the pharmaceutical sector, enabling direct to market business. The project will utilize approximately 7,150 square meters for order picking from seven distribution facilities around the country.
The regional distribution centers will share existing site management, transport and security infrastructure, amenities and office areas. A new metro carton delivery fleet will be established in each of the larger states combining the current carton delivery services and pharmacy direct services to achieve the most efficient solution. As part of the initiative, DHL Exel Supply Chain has invested in the Oracle Order Management System and Oracle Financials to deliver an order to cash functionality and a web based ordering system to roll out. It has also established a Direct to Pharmacy Customer Service team managing the pharmacy and hospital customers through a call centre. The dedicated Direct to Pharmacy Supply Team will manage order capture, CRM, warehousing and distribution, information management, billing, credit control and returns on behalf of pharmaceutical manufacturers.
Michael Ison, Director, Healthcare and Consumer Division at DHL said: "DHL has grown significantly because we have a long history of initiating Supply Chain improvement in the Healthcare sector in Australia and New Zealand. Our success indicates that we have satisfied customers in our ability to be aligned with the industries strategic direction. A key to this strategy is the national infrastructure we have created for DHL Pharmacy Supply that includes a network of warehouses, each with cold chain facilities and state-of-the-art ordering and tracking technology.
"The global expertise we now bring to the distribution of PBS medicines in Australia means we go further for the Pharmacist. We will deliver real value by creating a more efficient Supply Chain, improving margins and leveraging our relationships with major pharmaceutical manufacturers and the Community Pharmacy. We see this as an opportunity for us to become the leading channel to Community Pharmacy of pharmaceutical medicines."
Troy Bodle of Cable Beach Pharmacy, based in Broome, Western Australia said: "As a rural pharmacy, DHL's new direct to pharmacy distribution initiative is a positive step forward for the market and our customers. This means we can obtain a wide range of essential medicines within 24 hours."
DHL Exel Supply Chain's Healthcare contract logistics business has continued to expand rapidly through organic growth over the last seven years, with 70% market share of the pre-wholesale services and the only out sourced direct to retail services within the Pharmaceutical sector.
The Commonwealth Government of Australia approved DHL Exel Supply Chain as a CSO Distributor (wholesaler) of Government-funded medicines in Australia in August.
DHL does not only provide an excellent service for the healthcare industry in Australia. In 2006 DHL together with Lufthansa Cargo established a joint venture called LifeConEx, based in Miramar, Florida. With focus on the transport of temperature sensitive goods for the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, healthcare and medical industry LifeConEx works for multinational companies like Novartis and sanofi-aventis providing air freight capabilities to the US, Europe, Africa and Asia. In Germany DHL offers dedicated logistics solutions for the healthcare market, including daily direct deliveries into 21.500 pharmacies or truck based deliveries into about 100 different depots of German wholesalers.