University of Oulu

Ossi Kotavaara, Timo Pohjosenperä, Jari Juga, Jarmo Rusanen, Accessibility in designing centralised warehousing: Case of health care logistics in Northern Finland, Applied Geography, Volume 84, 2017, Pages 83-92, ISSN 0143-6228,

Accessibility in designing centralised warehousing : case of health care logistics in Northern Finland

Saved in:
Author: Kotavaara, Ossi1; Pohjosenperä, Timo2; Juga, Jari2;
Organizations: 1Geography Research Unit, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 3000, 90014, Finland
2Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 3000, 90014, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.7 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2017
Publish Date: 2020-08-11


Long distances and sparse service networks set challenging conditions for material logistics in health care. Globally, health care organisations have been making structural changes towards centralised warehousing and deliveries. In Northern Finland, material logistics of the public health care system rely mainly on numerous separate order and delivery systems, although logistics needs, ordering and stock in different health care facilities correspond to each other. As centralised logistics in orders and deliveries may lead to remarkable savings, pressure for centralised management is high. This paper analyses how effectively a potential centralised warehousing system can be organised based on its spatial components. These include optimal location of one or more warehouses, delivery network coverage and efficiency of routes, as well as accessibility of health centres and hospitals. The geographic information systems (GIS) -based accessibility analytical framework described in this study applies vehicle routing and heuristic computations to location-allocation of warehouses to potential sites by optimising transport cost with a constraint to provide service to at least 90% of delivery demand. The spatial data include the road network, health care facility locations with rough estimates of freight demand nodes and potential locations of warehouse facilities. The main findings of the study show that majority of health centres and hospitals can be effectively reached by a delivery network based on one or two warehouses. Furthermore, the efficiency of the delivery network does not increase remarkably by increasing the number of warehouses, when measured as driving time.

see all

Series: Applied geography
ISSN: 0143-6228
ISSN-E: 1873-7730
ISSN-L: 0143-6228
Volume: 84
Pages: 83 - 92
DOI: 10.1016/j.apgeog.2017.04.009
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 519 Social and economic geography
Funding: This study is a part of the project “Effective, user-centred and scalable support service models in long distance health care systems”. The project was funded by “Innovations in Social and Healthcare Services” programme by Tekes (the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation) with Northern Ostrobothnia Hospital District, Lapland Hospital District, City of Oulu and Posti Oy.
Copyright information: © 2017. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license