How we are responding to COVID-19

Our Role

Our Role

As the logistics experts of healthcare, distributors are technology innovators, information management experts, security specialists and efficiency professionals who ensure the safe and reliable delivery of medicines across the country. This provides millions of patients with efficient and affordable access to more than 4 billion prescription medicines each year.

Pharmaceutical distributors connect 180,000 healthcare providers and pharmacies with 1,400 drug manufacturers across the country, streamlining the supply chain to reduce costs and save the nation’s healthcare system time and money.

We purchase prescription medicines and other medical products directly from pharmaceutical manufacturers for secure storage in distribution centers strategically located across the country. State and federally licensed healthcare providers place orders with distributors to keep the prescription medicines that patients need in stock, and distributors process and ship these orders — delivering millions of prescription medicines and healthcare products daily. Distributors also provide support to local pharmacies and other healthcare facilities in the form of logistics expertise and financial services, making their businesses and the entire U.S. healthcare system more efficient.

As logistics experts, distributors do not conduct research, manufacture, promote or prescribe medications, nor do they influence prescribing patterns, the demand for specific products or patient-benefit designs. Getting a medicine starts with a prescription, and distributors help make sure that these medicines arrive at healthcare facilities safely, securely and reliably.

Pharmaceutical distributors are at the heart of the U.S. healthcare ecosystem. Our unique role in driving efficiency and innovation across the pharmaceutical supply chain saves the U.S. healthcare system between $33 billion and $53 billion every year. For more information about the value distributors provide to the U.S. healthcare system, download The Role of Distributors in the US Health Care Industry.