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Patients in Kenya receive Mobility Carts donated by MedShare. Photo Credit: MedShare.
Patients in Kenya receive Mobility Carts donated by MedShare. Photo Credit: MedShare.

Operational Strategies to Match Surplus with Humanitarian Needs

Authors

Can Zhang, Georgia Institute of Technology
Atalay Atasu, Georgia Institute of Technology
Turgay Ayer, Georgia Institute of Technology
L. Beril Toktay, Georgia Institute of Technology

Research Questions Addressed

How can medical surplus recovery organizations (MSROs) overcome a challenging supply chain—limited supply, high and varied demand, and limited information about recipient needs—to deliver the right medical product to the right recipient healthcare facility?

Can MSROs simultaneously provide information about their inventory levels and obtain accurate need information from recipients?

Primary Findings

Providing recipient organizations with information about the MSRO’s current medical surplus inventory is considered a best practice, but it can be problematic. Time-based competition can result in recipients selecting and receiving medical items that might not meet their most pressing needs.

Two alternative strategies can improve the value MSROs can provide to all their recipients: i) not sharing inventory information with recipients; and ii) withholding information regarding the preferences of other recipients (i.e., competitors) in the recipient pool.

CONTACTS

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Brandi Thompson
Communications Officer