Supply Chain Management main glossary

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

Browse the glossary using this index

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Implementation science

Implementation science is the study of mechanisms to advance the inclusion of evidence-based practices and policies into public health systems and day-to-day healthcare delivery.

Entry link: Implementation science


Quantitative or qualitative measures of program performance that are used to demonstrate change and that detail the extent to which program results are being or have been achieved. Indicators can be measured at each level: input, process, output, outcome, and impact.

Entry link: Indicators


The human and financial resources, physical equipment, clinical guidelines, and operational policies that are the core ingredients of programs and enable programs to be delivered.

Entry link: Inputs

Integrative medicine

Integrative medicine refers to the blending of conventional and natural or complementary medicines and/or therapies along with lifestyle interventions in a holistic approach, taking into account the physical, psychological, social and spiritual well being of the person.

Entry link: Integrative medicine

Intermediate result

(IR) An important, measurable result that is an essential step to achieving a strategic objective (SO) in a results framework. IRs themselves may capture a number of other discrete or more specific results. IRs may also help to achieve other IRs.

Entry link: Intermediate result

International Chemical Reference Substances

International Chemical Reference Substances (ICRS) are substances used by laboratories to test pharmaceuticals for the purpose of quality control. Used for validating results from specific tests.

Entry link: International Chemical Reference Substances

International reference prices

International Reference Prices (IRP) is an indicative list of prices of medicines compiled from publicly available data from various sources. The most well-known IRP is the Management Sciences for Health (MSH) International Drug Price Indicator. It is regularly updated, and features the median price of a large number of medicines gathered from manufacturers, wholesalers, international organisations and government. More information on their webpage.

Entry link: International reference prices

Interrupted time series analysis

An interrupted time series analysis (ITS) is a kind of study set up to evaluate the effectiveness of population-level health interventions that have been implemented at a specific point in time. ITS is increasingly being used to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions in the health sector such as clinical therapy or national public health legislation.

Entry link: Interrupted time series analysis

Inventory control

Inventory control is concerned with the inventory of stock present in the warehouse. It monitors what products are in stock, how many, where in the warehouse they are located, and their condition. It also aims at minimising the cost of filling customer orders through an efficient lay-out and placement. Inventory control is a part of broader inventory management.

Entry link: Inventory control

Inventory management

Inventory management can be defined as all activities carried out to maintain the optimum quantity of each inventory item. It includes inventory control, but is broader as it also encompasses the activities of quantification and procurement planning, determining when to order products, how much to order and the most effective source of supply for each item in the warehouse.

Entry link: Inventory management

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