By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
October 07, 2013
Transportation and logistics bellwether UPS recently rolled out new shipment service levels for its Temperature True Portfolio, which is comprised of various services focused on protecting temperature-sensitive healthcare products, which includes quality assurance support and 24/7 control tower monitoring.
These new offerings, which are comprised of UPS Temperature True Plus, UPS Temperature True Standard, and UPS Temperature True Saver, provide healthcare shippers with the ability to select from tiered service levels based on the degree of control needed while leveraging air and ocean freight and ensuring supply chain protection, said UPS. The company added that these offerings provide more options for shipping temperature-sensitive products like specialty pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical devices, diagnostics, and general consumer health and veterinarian medicine.
Dirk Van Peteghem, Vice President, Healthcare Logistics, UPS, told LM there were various drivers for these new service levels.
“Conversations with customers in the pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device industries about their current and upcoming needs for healthcare product shipments prompted us to further expand the existing, robust UPS Temperature True portfolio with these enhancements,” he explained.
When UPS originally launched UPS Temperature True, Van Peteghem said the company’s ambition was to capitalize on the UPS engineering prowess and culture of quality and compliance to offer its healthcare customers the most robust transportation experience for their temperature-sensitive drugs and devices.
“We wanted to create the best possible solution for high-value, high-risk shipments with very strict temperature requirements, typically in the 2-8°C range,” he said. “We established a network of control towers monitoring these shipments 24/7 around the globe. We formalized extensive operating procedures that go beyond regulatory requirements. We assembled a best-in-class quality team that continues to maintain and improve our processes every day. We trained all of our operators that at any point of the supply chain touches these shipments. Customers gave us great feedback on our existing Temperature True services and asked us to expand the offering.
Van Peteghem added that as companies look to expand into emerging countries, balance regulations, manage costs and protect shipments, the need for temperature-sensitive solutions is growing and evolving.
When asked to provide brief example of how each new offering works and offers benefits to shippers, Van Peteghem noted that each level of service is designed to meet specific requirements for healthcare products in the industry.
UPS Temperature True Plus, he said, is the highest level of service and is ideal for air freight shipments where excursion prevention and risk mitigation are paramount, and includes monitoring at every step of the way. This service can be used on a wide variety of products like biologics, vaccines and other very sensitive drug therapies.
UPS Temperature True Standard allows for streamlined and simplified processes, and is ideal for air freight shipments utilizing passive thermal control shipping systems where managing shipments according to pack-out expirations is needed to help customers maintain product compliance, said Van Peteghem . Some examples of the types of products shipped under UPS
Temperature True Standard include over-the-counter products and small molecule drugs.
And, UPS Temperature True Saver, which will bring an industry-first ocean freight solution to market in 2014, is best suited for large volume shipments where cost management is extremely important, while still maintaining safety and compliance, according to Van Peteghem. This service level can be used, for example, to move large quantities of product in and out of emerging healthcare markets around the world.
“The enhancements…further support UPS’s commitment to partnering with the healthcare industry and providing best-in-class services to healthcare customers,” he said. “As you can see, we have developed each service level based on the diverse needs of the healthcare industry of today and tomorrow. The UPS healthcare logistics team can work with companies to select the most appropriate service level, providing companies with more control over their temperature-sensitive products, regardless of size, time or temperature requirements. Our existing, robust temperature-sensitive portfolio of services includes UPS Temperature True multimodal freight services, small package services, proactive monitoring and intervention services, packaging consulting, validated temperature-controlled storage, risk management and contingency planning solutions, and global regulatory compliance expertise, all of which support the diverse needs of the healthcare industry.”
UPS officials also said that in 2014, the company will be rolling out UPS Temperature TrueSaver, which is an innovative ocean freight solution for healthcare shipments and is also the first of its kind in the industry. It is currently being piloted with some of its customers.
“UPS will continue to maintain and expand our best-in-class healthcare logistics services and global network of 42 healthcare-dedicated facilities to meet the growing and evolving needs of our customers,” said Van Peteghem.