E: support@e-carehub.co.uk



Emergency Planning: Responding to Shortages of Supplies Policy

Policy Statement

This policy outlines {{org_field_name}}’s approach to responding to shortages of necessary supplies that result from emergencies that disrupt one or more links in the supply chain. The Covid-19 outbreak is an example of a national emergency that has resulted at different times during its course in shortages of supplies needed to respond effectively to it, including food and household goods for the population at large, medicines for vulnerable people and personal protective equipment and coronavirus test kits for health and care service providers.

It is recognised that care services can potentially be affected adversely by provision and supply shortages that that arise from different local and national emergencies. Not only Covid-19, but flooding , equipment and power failures, fire, industrial action and different sorts of catastrophic event can have similar impacts of leaving a care service short of essential provisions.

{{org_field_name}} has an emergency planning strategy to enable it recover quickly from the impact of any emergency that might disrupt is provision and supply of goods and materials needed to achieve the standards of service delivery it expects and is expected of it. (See Emergency Planning for Care Services Policy).

The strategy is based on assessments of the risks to the safety and wellbeing of service users and staff and the capacity of staff to provide the care and support needed by their service users.

{{org_field_name}} recognises that it will need to adopt different responses to different situations with the overall objectives of maintaining full service delivery and reducing disruption of the supply and provision of goods and services to the minimum. It also accepts that much will depend on the causes of the supply problem and how far any difficulties could be anticipated.


These are responses that should be made under different emergencies.

  1. {{org_field_name}} has no means to pay suppliers and cannot obtain necessary supplies.
    a. If the reasons are related to financial problems facing the service and service users are at risk of harm because of this the provider with consult with the relevant local authority and care regulator as the organisations responsible for the market oversight of care services to decide a course of action.
    b. If the reasons are temporary, for example, due to administrative error, the provider will negotiate temporary bridging funding to ensure the continuation of essential supplies.
  2. The shortages are caused by difficulties in the supply chain resulting in the supplier being unable to deliver as per contract.
    a. As a first step {{org_field_name}} will discuss with the supplier the reasons for the delay and assess the risks to the running of the service from the outcome of the discussion.
    b. If the risks of disruption to the running of the service are high and service users are at high risk of being harmed {{org_field_name}} will immediately seek alternative sources of supply to meet the actual or likely shortage.
    c. Where the shortages are critical to the safety and wellbeing of service users and / or staff (eg for PPE for infection control) {{org_field_name}} will also notify the local authority / commissioning service and care regulator to see if there are alternative means of obtaining the necessary supplies.
    d. In times of national emergency such as with the Covid-19 outbreak, {{org_field_name}} will also take part in discussions, which might take place through local resilience forum activity and / or local authority and health service partnerships and with other providers to assess the possibility of collective procurement action to ease the shortages.
    e. If on initial assessment it can be established that the shortages are likely to be temporary {{org_field_name}} might also set up and use some contingency funds to enable essential goods and services to be bought from other outlets and suppliers.
    f. {{org_field_name}} will discuss any contractual implications with the supplier on an issue by issue basis.

{{org_field_name}} will always keep its procurement policies under review in the light of its experiences. It clearly always has to keep costs in mind. However, where there are risks of continuing shortages it will consider having a variety of potential suppliers and will have contingency plans for specific products that are at risk of being in short supply.


Training will be provided for staff responsible for procurement of goods and services and for dealing constructively with supply issues.

Responsible Person: {{org_field_registered_manager_first_name}} {{org_field_registered_manager_last_name}}

Reviewed on: {{last_update_date}}

Copyright ©2024 {{org_field_name}}. All rights reserved

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