Supply Chain Management main glossary

This is a glossary of key terms used throughout the site.

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Bid security

Bid security is a form of financial guarantee where the bidder is required to make a deposit at the time of submission of a bid or tender. Bid security is a safeguard against withdrawal of bids before the end of the bid validity period or a refusal to sign the contract (see also performance guarantee).

Entry link: Bid security

Buffer stock

Buffer stock is a synonym of safety stock, the stock that is kept in reserve in case an item is unavailable from the supplier or a sudden increase occurs in demand. This may be determined at 3-6 months, or calculated as a % of the annual quantity required, depending on the country and system.

Entry link: Buffer stock


Cash on delivery

Cash on delivery: similar to output-based aid, but with an emphasis on outcomes instead of outputs.

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Certificate of analysis

Certificate of analysis (CoA) is a document that certifies the different tests and the results for a batch of FPP against finished product specifications. The information is verified by head of QA/QC and is used for batch release.

Entry link: Certificate of analysis

Cold chain

Cold chain deals with the management of temperature-sensitive products in the supply chain cycle. It is a delicate part of the SCM of medicines: if the quality of medicines is compromised during transport and storage through exposure to inappropriate conditions, patients and end users may suffer adverse consequences.

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Cold storage

Cold storage refers to facilities or containers where medicines or health products that are temperature-sensitive are stored. Temperature range normally is 2 - 8° C. It is an important part of the cold chain. Cold storage contrasts with aircon storage where temperature stays under 23 ° C or with ambient storage where products are stored at room temperature.

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Complementary/alternative medicine

Complementary/alternative medicine (CAM) refers to the healthcare practices that are not part of a country's own tradition and are not integrated into the dominant healthcare system. Sometimes, this term is used interchangeably with the term traditional medicine.

Entry link: Complementary/alternative medicine

Conceptual framework

(Also, conceptual model) A diagram of a set of relationships between factors that are believed to impact or lead to a target condition. It is the foundation of project design, management, and monitoring.

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Conditional cash transfers

Conditional cash transfers: cash provided to patients for using specific services; e.g. immunizing children.

Entry link: Conditional cash transfers

Counterfeit medicines

Counterfeit medicines are made by someone other than the genuine manufacturer and refer to products that are deliberately and fraudulently mislabelled with respect to identity and/or source. Counterfeiting can occur for both branded and generic products and not only affects public health but also violates intellectual property rights.

Entry link: Counterfeit medicines

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