Pharmaceuticals or medicinal products are dispensed to the public or patients through pharmacies, drugstores and hospitals, most of time after a complex journey. In an increasingly globalized world pharmaceutical products are manufactured nearby or in another continent and transported over sea and land, by different types of vehicles, such as boats, aircraft, railway carriages, trailers, vans from the manufacturing site to the dispensing site. During storage in vehicles, transport hubs, warehouses and other means which are used in the supply of the pharmaceutical products, the quality should be maintained, even for cold chain pharmaceutical products.
Good distribution standards are becoming more important to safeguard the original quality of the pharmaceutical products. Regulatory authorities implement GDP trough their legislations and publish guidance documents. Logistic service contractors working for the pharmaceutical industry have to implement the GDP standards in the whole of their operations: transport, warehousing or distribution.
Implementing GDP in the logistic environment requires financial investment. Trained key staff, dedicated warehouses, adequately equipped vehicles, validation, temperature mapping and secure temperature data storage are challenges for the logistic service companies. On the other hand cost pressures is becoming a major driver for the pharmaceutical industry.