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New Supply Chain Crisis: Medical Supplies

U.S. ecommerce sales jumped 11% in this year’s holiday shopping season, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse report, yet again underscoring the COVID-19 pandemic’s role in transforming customers’ shopping habits.
New supply chain crisis: medical supplies
Photo: Andy Li/ Unsplash


Between 8,000 and 12,000 shipping containers carrying medical supplies to various parts of the U.S. are on a delay of up to 37 days due to ongoing transportation congestion, according to new data from the Health Industry Distributors’ Association.

Why it matters: Per their projections, medical supplies arriving at a U.S. port on Christmas Day won’t be delivered to hospitals and other care settings until February 2022. That could delay critical supplies at a time when health care is already expected to most need them due to surges from Delta and Omicron.

Details: The supply chain problems can compound, starting with medical supplies languishing in U.S. ports for an average of 17 days, officials said.

  • HIDA research also shows containers with medical supplies are delayed an average of 11 days by rail, and nine days by truck.
  • The top five ports with congestion issues are Los Angeles/Long Beach; Savannah, Georgia; New York/New Jersey; Charleston, South Carolina and Seattle.

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