COVID-19

Health Product Supply

The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting global health product supply chains, affecting key materials and ingredients, finished health products, logistics, shipping and more.

The Global Fund is working closely with suppliers and partners to assess the impact on core health product supplies, providing recommendations for implementing partners on how to manage the impact and exercising flexibilities to ensure the continued flow of quality-assured health products.

Assessment

As of 25 May 2020, the Global Fund’s product and delivery outlook shows the overall impact of COVID-19 on health product supply chains for Global Fund grants remains at moderate.

Area Situation update Operational risk assessment
All pharmaceuticals

Including antiretroviral, malaria and TB medicines
In India, reduced production is expected to continue through the lockdown period. Delays of 1-2 months are to be expected over the next few months. We continue to monitor progress directly with suppliers and the U.S. Government, WHO, the Stop TB Partnership and other partners to support access to needed products despite the challenging situation. Moderate
Long-lasting insecticidal nets Longer lead times are expected for pyrethroid nets until production in India restarts. While India lockdown affects PBO supply, production in Viet Nam and Tanzania is ongoing, which allows us to mitigate risks. Initial supply issues for Next Generation nets have eased with China-based manufacturers now operating at full capacity. Moderate
Diagnostics Supply constraints have emerged for malaria RDTs, and the Global Fund is actively engaging with partners and other suppliers to identify options to ensure supply continuity. Delays of at least 2 months are anticipated for orders placed after 10 April. There are no supply issues for viral load or early infant diagnostics, however delays are likely due to logistics constraints. Moderate
Freight and logistics Multiple origin and destination countries adopting different restrictions, are directly or indirectly impacting freight movements. The Global Fund’s Procurement Service Agents are operating as planned where possible to propose the best delivery option, but with contingencies such as: Re-rerouting of shipments; consolidating airfreight to ocean freight or changing transit countries to catch “cargo-only” aircraft; changing mode of transport for final delivery; shipping to neighbouring countries; exploring road transport and air charter options; and others. Cost impacts are highly likely. Moderate

We are assessing potential delays for every order. Currently, 11% of orders face delays of more than thirty days, including 19% of orders in transit. We are communicating closely with Principal Recipients to review mitigation plans and adapt lead times to minimize disruption.

Our regularly updated document contains additional details on our latest assessment and recommendations:

  • COVID-19 Impact on Health Product Supply: Assessment and Recommendations
    download in English | Français

Recommendations

  • The Global Fund is advising Principal Recipients on the impact of COVID-19 on future orders and providing recommendations to optimize supply and enable reliable delivery.
  • Rapid decisions by Principal Recipients of freight proposals are required to secure the best available slot, as approval delays could contribute several weeks’ delays.
  • Principal Recipients should urgently submit all outstanding requisitions in wambo.org and send Procurement Request Forms (PRFs) to Stop TB/GDF for deliveries expected in 2020. We will work with our PSAs to explore options to minimize risks to supply disruption, however failure to place requisitions in line with the Category and Product-Level Procurement and Delivery Planning Guide: Indicative Lead Times [ download in English | Français ] increases the risk that an order will not be financed from the current implementation period because the order was not placed with sufficient time for delivery before the end of the grant.
  • Principal Recipients participating in the Pooled Procurement Mechanism should reach out to their Global Fund Principal Recipient Services contact with any questions or for additional information.
  • Other Principal Recipients should contact their Country Team should they incur significant challenges or delays of more than 30 days in procuring core life-saving products.
  • Procurement guidance for Principal Recipients

Procurement of COVID-19 health products

  • Additional support for Principal Recipients is available through the COVID-19 Response Mechanism (C19RM) and grant flexibilities. The C19RM will finance COVID-19 control measures consistent with WHO guidance, including personal protective equipment (PPE), diagnostics, treatment, communications and other measures.
  • Principal Recipients are strongly encouraged to procure PPE through local channels given the high global demand for these products. Only if Principal Recipients face severe challenges should they reach out to UNICEF Procurement Services to order through their catalogue. TB programs can also reach out to Stop TB’s Global Drug Facility to procure PPE.
  • The Global Fund is working closely with key partners, international organizations, governments and technical agencies through a World Health Organization-led consortium to rapidly and equitably support access to COVID-19 health products and diagnostics for low- and middle-income countries. We will provide detailed guidance for PRs in the coming days.
  • Principal Recipients participating in the Pooled Procurement Mechanism should reach out to their Global Fund Principal Recipient Services contact with any questions or for additional information. Other Principal Recipients should contact their Country Team should they incur significant challenges or delays of more than 30 days in procuring core life-saving products.

Quality assurance

The Global Fund introduced flexibilities to ensure the continued flow of quality-assured health products and support countries in their response to COVID-19.

We publish operational guidance for Principal Recipients related to requirements for procuring eligible COVID-19 diagnostic products and managing exceptions on quality assurance testing and sampling. Additionally, we regularly update our list of COVID-19 diagnostic products eligible for procurement with Global Fund financing, in line with our Interim Quality Assurance Requirements.

  • Quality assurance documents

Information related to the quality assurance of health products related to the three diseases is on our Quality Assurance pages.