Atlanta-based global freight transportation and logistics services provider UPS remains highly focused on its Covid-19 vaccine distribution efforts, at a time when the FDA recently announced it expanded an emergency use authorization, for children ages 5-to-11, coupled with positive case numbers up in various parts of the United States.
What’s more, in December, UPS celebrated its one-year anniversary of kicking off vaccine distribution, around the same timeframe it reached 1 billion doses delivered globally, with that tally now at more than 1.4 billion. A company spokesperson told LM that UPS now handles more than 33% of global vaccine distribution with a 99.9% delivery success rate.
The spokesperson added that UPS’s vaccine distribution efforts remain a primary focus on various fronts, including: working with the leading vaccine companies to provide 500,000 square-feet of space in Louisville and 3,000 ultra-low temp freezers, for their entire portfolio of new vaccines and leveraging it with other clients to provide the UPS Healthcare Vaccine Experience, including other biologics, new vaccines, biogenetics and cell & gene therapies; and it is also opening up new air cargo lanes from key gateways to facilitate these efforts.
LM Group News Editor Jeff Berman interviewed UPS Healthcare President Wes Wheeler to discuss the company’s vaccine distribution efforts.
LM: What are the origin and destination points for the new air cargo lanes from key gateways and what will be the frequency of these flights?
Wheeler: UPS Healthcare continually looks to expand its trade lanes to provide additional flexibility and efficiency for the movement of critical healthcare packages around the world.
To support this, UPS Healthcare is establishing around 500 new trade lanes. Given the scale, new lanes are being added around the world to better facilitate healthcare logistics for customers. This is coupled with our focus on international expansion throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. There is a key focus on expanding new lanes internationally.
LM: What are the biggest, or main, benefits of these efforts for your customers?
Wheeler: Ultimately, these investments into the UPS Healthcare network will provide flexibility, transparency, and shipment integrity for our customers around the world. The dedication to dependability, quality and end-to-end visibility will allow customers to expand their reach to access the global healthcare market.
LM: What are the next steps/future plans for UPS relating to vaccine-focused efforts?
Wheeler: UPS Healthcare is continually looking at innovations and monitoring technology to make our global smart logistics network an even more dependable partner to the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry—providing customers with visibility and speed, which are crucial in a competitive marketplace. These solutions and industry expertise will ultimately help to bolster the customer experience by providing more visibility into shipments, while also increasing the number of packages the company can sort and deliver each day.