Pharmaceuticals supply chain : health security, regulatory and financial challenge

The Nîmes CHU logistical platform is dealing every day with an average of 250 orders from which temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals such as medecines, diagnosis products, vaccines and laboratory reactives. Those are stored on the hospital platform before being transferred to the final hospital wards namely the Central Hospital Pharmacy, Biochemistry Lab and Cancer Treatment Unit.

Those products used to be packaged in isothermal containers but this solution will soon be discarded for environmental reasons (containers were not recycled) and products are now delivered in their simple packaging, cardboard boxes or standard pallets but within refrigerated trucks. This is what made the Nîmes hospital react and respond in a timely manner in acquiring the proper equipment in order to avoid its deliveries to remain on the platform without temperature protection.


Chargement des produits pharmaceutiques

« Ensuring no disruption in the cold chain when transporting temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals never comes as an option, this is strictly ruled by the Cofrac. Any temperature swing will result in the quarantine of the product which will have to be destroyed at a later stage, should it be proven to be corrupted. A stock shortage will imply that patients will not be able to get their treatment. This is where the greater risk lies.», specifies Dr Jean-Marie Kinowski, Head of Pharmacy at Nîmes CHU Hospital. And adding : « Our risk is a financial one as well. We can easily receive more than 100 000 euros worth of temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals in one single day. Some products being innovative treatments are valued several thousands euros each. Quite a significant loss if that should happen »


Dr Jean-Marie Kinowski, Chef du Service Pharmacie du CHU de Nîmes

COLDWAY’s innovative technology ensures no disruption in the cold chain

In selecting COLDWAY’s technology, the Nîmes Hospital is now able to prove that no disruption was ever registered in the cold chain at any time, from the temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals delivery until their final destination in the different hospital wards.

Nîmes logistic platform is currently using by shift 6 Roll cabinets from the COLDWAY Alcatherm® Roll range. 3 Rolls are started and set every morning at 5°C and stored waiting on the logistic platform dock. Any temperature sensitive package delivered is therefore stored inside as the deliveries go all morning long. At 2 :00 PM, the 3 Rolls are loaded on a standard truck and transported to their final destination : one goes to the Central Pharmacy, second to Biochemistry Lab and the third to the Cancer Treatment unit. The second set of 3 Rolls which have been emptied the day before are then picked up and returned to the logistic platform in order to be recharged and to be used again the following day


Livraison et stockage des produits pharmaceutiques

« Beyond the fact that the cold chain is perfectly respected, COLDWAY’s Rolls are easy to operate and our staff can transfer them very quickly from the docks to the truck and then from the truck to the different hospital locations », specifies Eric Panicucci, Operation Manager from Nîmes CHU Logistics.


Eric Panicucci, Responsable d’Exploitation de la Plateforme Logistique du CHU de Nîmes

COLDWAY’s technology, an optimal solution for the Pharmaceuticals supply chain

Adaptable and mobile, products from the Alcatherm® Roll range benefit from COLDWAY’s patented technology which involves a sustainable thermochemical process which generates a powerful refrigeration by using a natural refrigerant with zero impact on the ozone layer, no consumables and last but not least, without any exterior power supply. Temperature sensitive products are therefore stored and/or transported under monitored and controlled temperature for time windows between 12 to 48 hours.

The integrated temperature traceability soft of these containers and cabinets allows the operator to download the recorded temperature curves and door openings. As they comply with the Pharmaceuticals regulatory requirements, the Nîmes CHU Hospital is therefore able to ensure no disruption in the cold chain of its supplies.

« The Health market is our reference market which leads our innovation strategy because of its strict regulations and the challenges which are at stake », déclare Laurent Rigaud, Président du Directoire de COLDWAY. « The Nîmes CHU’s decision came as a real reward for us at COLDWAY. This application of our Alcatherm® Roll range in the temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals transport is supporting our position and means a new achievement as a result of many efforts which we are committed to continue in order to market the whole pharmaceuticals supply chain. »

The temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals supply chain is including in fact many other actors like manufacturers, depositories, wholesalers, retail pharmacies, etc. COLDWAY is planning to hasten this market penetration specifically through its Alcatherm® Roll and Alcatherm® Containers ranges.


Laurent Rigaud, Président du Directoire de COLDWAY