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The drug logistics process: an innovative experience

Roberta Pinna (Department of Economics and Business, University of Cagliari, Cagliari, Italy)
Pier Paolo Carrus (Department of Economics and Business, University of Cagliari, Cagliari, Italy)
Fabiana Marras (Department of Economics and Business, University of Cagliari, Caglairi, Italy)

The TQM Journal

ISSN: 1754-2731

Article publication date: 9 March 2015




The purpose of this paper is to present the latest innovations in the drug distribution processes of hospital companies, which are currently dealing with high inventory and storage costs and fragmented organizational responsibilities.


The literature review and the in-depth analysis of a case study support the understanding of the unit dose drug distribution system and the subsequent definition of the practical implications for hospital companies.


Starting from the insights offered by the case study, the analysis shows that the unit dose system allows hospitals to improve the patient care quality and reduce costs.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations of the research are those related to the theoretical and exploratory nature of the study, but from a practical point of view, the work provides important indications to the management of healthcare companies, which have to innovate their drug distribution systems.


This paper analyzes a new and highly topical issue and provides several insights for the competitive development of a fundamental sector.



Fabiana Marras gratefully acknowledges Sardinia Regional Government for the financial support of her PhD scholarship (P.O.R. Sardegna F.S.E. Operational Programme of the Autonomous Region of Sardinia, European Social Fund 2007-2013 – Axis IV Human Resources, Objective l.3, Line of Activity l.3.1).


Pinna, R., Carrus, P.P. and Marras, F. (2015), "The drug logistics process: an innovative experience", The TQM Journal, Vol. 27 No. 2, pp. 214-230.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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