Drug warehouses (DWs) play a crucial role in drug distribution of government-supported healthcare supply chain as it controls both the cost and responsiveness of the logistics activities. The current study proposes a methodology using data envelopment analysis (DEA) to estimate the performance along different dimensions and was applied to 30 government-supported DWs.Design/methodology/approachThis study employs DEA to evaluate the performance and relative technical efficiency of DWs. In this research, four inputs and six outputs are identified based on intensive literature review and discussion with all stakeholders of DWs. The inputs are warehouse storage capacity, temperature-controlled storage capacity, number of skilled employees and operational cost, while the outputs are fill rate, number of generic drugs, volume of drugs, consumption points, inventory turns ratio and time efficiency.FindingsResults show that 30% DWs operate at the most productive scale size with 100% efficiency level while 47% DWs have a significant possibility for further enhancement in productive efficiency and 23% DWs should diminish their operational size to increase their productivity level. It was also found that achieving 100% operational productivity along warehouse space capacity needs significant effort, whereas other three inputs, namely temperature-controlled capacity, number of skilled employees and operational cost, require comparatively less effort. Similarly, it was observed that the performance along the fill rate and time efficiency is satisfactory, whereas the performance along other fours output variables (i.e. number of generic drugs, volume of drugs, consumption points and inventory turns ratio) needs to be improved.Practical implicationsThe findings offer insights on the inputs and outputs that significantly contribute to efficiencies so that inefficient DWs can focus on these factors.Originality/valueAlthough many issues related to DEA have been widely researched and reported, but no literature has been found for analysis of DWs in general and government-supported DWs specifically to find out efficiencies for supply chain performance improvement.
Journal of Advances in Management Research – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 26, 2020
Keywords: Data envelopment analysis (DEA); Performance measurement; Efficiency; Drug warehouse
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