Resources and Information
How is VGM Fulfillment Responding to COVID-19?
At VGM Fulfillment we continue to operate at all three of our warehouse locations in Iowa, Tennessee, and Arizona. As a distribution company operating in the medical space we are designated among the government’s critical infrastructure and, therefore, operations continue as normal. Our highest priority at VGM Fulfillment is to help ensure the health and safety of our employees, customers, and suppliers while meeting our commitments to our customers. In a challenging time, we continue to work hard to minimize the impact Covid-19 will have on your business.
Here’s What You Can Expect From VGM Fulfillment:
- Constant monitoring of our relationships with vendor and carrier partners to minimize any supply chain and operational disruptions.
- Continue to monitor and comply with applicable government regulations related to the containment of Coronavirus and Covid-19.
- Increased awareness, communication, and information being provided to our staff across all locations in regards to the best ways to prevent the spread of infection, based on guidelines from the World Health Organization (WHO) and, within the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Commitment to additional shifts and staffing to meet the demands of our customers.
- Access to our portal at www.vgmfulfillment.com/portal to enter orders, track shipments as well as pull reports and invoices to keep your business operational.
Frequently Asked Questions Pertaining to COVID-19
- Are CPAP resupply shipments considered an essential service?
- Yes, at this time we are continuing to operate at the highest level possible at all three of our warehouses. States mandating "stay at home" have made exceptions for healthcare.
- Are manufacturers and carriers still working?
- Manufacturers of medical equipment and delivery carriers are considered essential services and are still working to provide goods and services. We are in constant communication with all our partners and are working closely with them to ensure limited supply chain and delivery interruptions.
- Has VGM taken any additional steps to keep its employees and warehouses safe?
- Yes, VGM is taking preventative measures to stop the spread of germs by increasing the frequency of our cleaning and maintenance schedules. Additional hand sanitizer stations and signs detailing hygiene best practices have been posted in all common areas. Employees are staying home if they are feeling sick, and employees that can work from home are doing so. Warehouse employees are washing hands throughout the day, and before handling any product. We have also rearranged our shifts to allow time for additional cleaning and sanitization of equipment to minimize exposure.
- Are backorders an issue?
- At this time we are not seeing or experiencing any major back order issues. If issues do arise your customer service representative will reach out to discuss them directly with you. We monitor inventory levels on a daily basis.
- What should we communicate to our patients about package safety?
- First and foremost, we recommend that all patients take precautions they feel are right for them. A good rule of thumb would be to recommend that all patients wipe down packages with disinfectant and allow packages to remain outside for 24 hours after delivery if possible.
- Wipe Down Package with Disinfectant
- The first suggestion is to wipe down packages with disinfectant. Most deliveries coming from VGM Fulfillment have two pieces of packaging--the product packaging, and the shipping container. Realistically, you should probably just remove your product from the shipping package, and dispose of that box immediately. Once you've done that, the surface of the inside package can be wiped down with a disinfectant wipe. Most products shipped by VGM Fulfillment have likely been in a package for some time, meaning that the inside product probably isn't a source of infection. Still, if you want to be extra careful, you can wipe that surface as well. After you've disposed of the packaging, and wiped everything else down, wash your hands.
- Leave the Package Outside
- If that's not enough, another option is to leave the entire package outside. While it's not known exactly how long this particular virus can survive on cardboard packaging, in the long term it needs a host organism to survive and multiply. If it can survive on cardboard for only 24 hours, leaving it outside may kill it, allowing you to safely bring your package inside. If you have a garage, you can simply place the entire box outside, and leave it a few days. Then to be safe, you can wipe down the inside package as described above. For more information refer to the CDC website.
- Can I still send packages overnight to patients?
- Expedited services are still offered through our preferred carrier, UPS, but as of March 24, 2020 they have suspended their service guarantee for all U.S. origin shipments at any level. They will continue to attempt to meet their guarantee of delivery times but it is not a guaranteed service until further notice.
- Is UPS Signature Required still a delivery option?
- Yes, UPS is adapting to new business realities by temporarily modifying the procedures its drivers use for residential and business deliveries. In order to minimize contact with recipients, UPS is modifying its process related to delivery signatures. When a signature is requested by the shipper, UPS drivers will validate and record the name of the recipient of the package in lieu of obtaining a signature. In addition, where adult signature is requested by a shipper, recipients will be required to present identification with proof of age to the driver upon delivery.