The effect of inventory management practices on operational performance of healthcare commodities.: the moderating role of demand uncertainty. A case study of western regional medical stores.

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Previous research in the body of literature pertaining to the health supply chain has concentrated on the effect that inventory management procedures have on health commodities from the point of view of health facilities. While such studies have yielded valuable insight, they did not consider the perspective of distributor agencies such as regional medical stores that are responsible for distributing health commodities. Moreover, the role of demand uncertainty in the relationship between inventory management practices and operational performance has not been thoroughly investigated using cross-sectional data by the prior researchers. This study attempted to fill these gaps by examining the moderating role of demand uncertainty in the relationship between inventory management and operational performance in a developing country context. The study employed a case study design with a quantitative approach, and a questionnaire instrument was used to collect data from 100 staff members of western regional medical stores. Multiple linear regression was employed to analyze the data. The result showed that western regional medical stores highly prioritize the just-in-time technique (1st rank), followed by economic order quantity (2nd rank), vendor-managed inventory (3rd rank), and activity-based costing (4th rank). In addition, inventory management has a positive and significant effect on operational performance. Lastly, demand uncertainty does not moderate the relationship between inventory management and operational performance. The study recommended that management should invest more resources towards improving inventory management practices, strengthen intra-organizational relationships by prioritizing the sharing of information, delegating responsibilities to capable employees, appraising and rewarding employees for their good performance, and institutionalizing a framework for improving poor performance. The study concluded that future research should collect data from more than one regional medical store to enhance generalization
A thesis submitted to the department of supply chain and information system, knust school of business, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of the degree of master of science (procurement and supply chain management)