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Public Health and GIS

Route Planning & Route Optimization for Vaccine Supply Chain Management through Geo-Spatial Technology :

Keywords:Geographic Information System (GIS),ArcGIS Server,WebGIS,Network Analyst.

Introduction: The availability of adequate supplies of high quality vaccines and other immunization related material in time is critical to improving immunization coverage. Therefore, to ensure that, a robust cold chain, vaccine & logistics supply system is very important.  The key areas of Cold chain, vaccine and logistics support include vaccine supply & distribution, cold chain management and utilization at immunization session. Another important element in vaccine chain management is maintaining the temperature within recommended temperature range during transportation and storage.

A study was carried out in the the state of Uttar Pradesh, India in year 2012 by Immunization Technical Support Unit (ITSU), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare to understand the issues in Logistic and Supply Chain management. The study highlighted the weaknesses in supply chain in terms of lack of visibility of stocks, under and over stocking of vaccines and logistics at various levels of supply chain which could lead to stock-outs and high wastages. Lack of coordination at various levels was also a major issue identified. The system was still using manual records for stock and supply chain management.

Methodology: The GIS Technology can play a vital role in improving vaccine and logistics supply chain management through network optimization and route planning. Use of Geospatial Technology could be a powerful tool to support decision making for the effective supply chain management in the immunization program. In the vaccine supply chain management GIS tool can map manufacturer, distribution, processing Units, transportations and help in the vehicle route planning and vehicle Network analysis.

To develop a GIS based route planning and optimization, the data of suppliers, vaccine manufacturer Units, supplier’s locations, District vaccine stores, regional vaccine stores and sub centres locations with topologies of the roads are stored and managed in the GIS platform through network analyst extension of ESRI ArcGIS. Road network data has been created with the help of different sources and distance was calculated in the attribute table and fuel cost also calculated

according to the distance of road vector data with respect to their category Like .national highway, state highway, district road and rural road .After building all the topology of the vector data we can execute our query in the ArcGIS desktop itself or with the help of web GIS after deploying all the geo-dataset in the ArcGIS Server. After successfully developing the database and process system can enable to answer the question in below figure (Fig 1.1) for the vaccine supply chain.

With the above diagram we can understand and analyse the route planning, shortest route planning for vaccine distribution, alternate route for the vaccine supply, Time calculation and time management through GIS Network Analyst technology .And manage the Supply Chan in planed manner.

  • Sanjaykumar & Suneeta Agrwal ,PN-253,Geospatial World Forum,Jan2011.

The above Paper has been Published in the International Health GIS Conference Bangkok also .