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Posts Tagged ‘supply chain coordination’

One of the recurring themes of the current crisis is the persistent lack of protective medical equipment — both masks and gowns. Part of the reason is that there has been unprecedented spike in demand. As the graph below shows, the US lacks the capacity to keep up with current demand.

Screenshot 2020-04-30 15.45.47

But “not enough capacity” can’t really be the whole explanation for the current shortage. Capacity is a limit on what can be done in one period. As long as capacity exceeded demand in some periods (i.e., back in the before times), providers could have built up inventory. Inventory might not have met the pandemic demand spike but it could have at least tempered the shortfall.

So why did the supply chain for masks fail?

(more…)

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