HDA recently sponsored and participated in the Milken Institute’s 2021 Future of Health Summit. This year’s event, held on June 22–23, brought together industry experts, public health leaders and elected officials for insightful policy discussions on a variety of issues that are shaping healthcare in our country.
HDA President and CEO Chip Davis recently spoke at the 2021 BLC Online about the unique role of the healthcare distribution industry in combating COVID-19, how distributors continue to rise to its challenges and what is still needed to turn the corner on the pandemic, among other association priorities.
A new report estimates that the overall health costs of climate change already exceed $820 billion each year. The healthcare sector alone is responsible for nearly 5 percent of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. According to a December 2020 Health Affairs study, “health damages stemming from U.S. [healthcare] pollution in 2013 [are] on the same order of magnitude as deaths from preventable medical errors.” Unfortunately, many of the most vulnerable communities are impacted by the harmful effects of climate change.
For the past year, I have watched the men and women of the healthcare distribution industry go above and beyond on a daily basis to make sure medicines, vaccines, PPE and other medical supplies reached patients and providers across the country. Their energy, determination and commitment have ensured a resilient supply chain during the most challenging days of the COVID-19 pandemic and a distribution network that has continued to deliver value each and every day.
We have reached another pivotal moment in the fight against COVID-19: the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate for emergency use. With demand for vaccines currently outpacing supply, the addition of a third candidate is welcome news for Americans. Most importantly, a one-dose option that only requires refrigeration will provide greater flexibility in delivering vaccines to more individuals, including those in underserved and rural areas, with the ability to scale up production exponentially as we move into the spring and summer months.