The Heavy Impact of Supply Chain Miseries

Resource shortages impact perioperative services, but surgeon involvement in supply chain management and decision-making can reduce the risk of disruption

  • Sixty percent of survey respondents (who were mostly hospital administrators and hospital procurement staff) reported shortages of drugs, supplies, and medical devices in the prior six months.
  • Examples of impacted care resulting from these shortages included giving more opioid analgesia because of lidocaine shortages and surgery cancellations.
  • Hospitals are seeking to get around these supply chain problems by sourcing items from "nontraditional suppliers," but these have been found to result in delivery of items (like masks and gowns) that fall short of relevant quality standards.
  • Engaging surgeons in supply chain decisions can increase efficiency, lower costs, and reduce risk of poor inventory management, as covered in this CORRelations clinical post and this Efficient Practice interview.


ECRI. Medication, Supply, Equipment Shortages are Harming Patients. Accessed January 11, 2024.

ECRI, ISMP. ECRI and ISMP Drug, Supply, and Equipment Shortage Survey. Accessed January 11, 2024.