May 27, 2021 – Cardinal Health recently posted the details of its successful vaccine distribution partnership with U.S. Renal Care (USRC), one of the largest dialysis organizations in the nation.
Based on the success of the program, Cardinal Health says it will begin working with other dialysis organizations on similar processes for delivering vaccines to their clinics. In total, Cardinal Health expects to ship COVID-19 vaccines to more than 1,000 dialysis clinics before the end of summer.
Cardinal says that when USRC realized the scope of distributing the vaccine was beyond its own capabilities, USRC reached out to Cardinal’s Metro Medical team – USRC’s long-standing distribution partner – to ask if it could orchestrate a cold-chain pack-out distribution process, in which the large vaccine shipments would be separated into smaller parcels and shipped at a controlled temperature to USRC clinics around the country.
Working together, the companies delivered more than 500 vaccine shipments to 228 clinics, so 5,500 kidney care patients, their caregivers and members of the local community could be vaccinated.
Coordinating with Pfizer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and DaVita (the network administrator for dialysis centers), Cardinal Health developed a cold-chain solution and shipped the first vaccines to USRC clinics just 19 days after the idea was proposed.
Cardinal Health also partnered with FedEx to ensure the vaccine shipments were given priority alert status, guaranteeing a higher level of quality oversight and tracking throughout the delivery process.
“There is no way we could have vaccinated so many patients without the help of Cardinal Health,” said Anna Stella, Vice President of Operational Excellence at USRC. “Not only did their partnership and collaboration allow us to reach more patients with the vaccine, it allowed healthcare providers in our clinics to really focus on our patients.”