Frequently asked questions

Who is SPD?

Cardinal Health created its Specialty Pharmaceutical Distribution business (SPD) in 1992 specifically to meet the needs of one of the nation’s largest GPOs of that day, the VHA hospital alliance. Today, we’re one of the largest distributors of therapeutic plasma products and specialty pharmaceuticals in the U.S., serving hospitals, physicians and home-care providers.

We’re also a major supplier for many of the country’s largest IDNs and GPOs, which makes Cardinal Health an integral part of the pharmacy supply chain. We serve thousands of customers weekly from our facility near Nashville, TN, which is centrally located within one day’s drive of 75% of the entire U.S. population.


What’s your experience with GPOs?

Cardinal Health has extensive GPO expertise and currently operates an allocation database for our other GPO partners, including: Novation, Broadlane, MedAssets, Consorta and CHPC.

Our years of experience administering a variety of GPO programs of varying scopes and sizes gives us a unique and wide-ranging knowledge of the successful administration of any size GPO program. Our technology is state-of-the art; our ordering and shipping systems track and maintain ordering history for all customers.

Each member’s facility allocation is loaded into our database and tracked daily. The actual quantity of product shipped is also tracked daily. And to help ensure that product is going where it’s needed, we analyze purchasing information every quarter to determine each member’s average use, and their allocation is adjusted accordingly. By using this analysis and reporting process, we can help ensure that product is being distributed to the facilities that need and use it the most.

  • We’re the industry’s best experts in successfully managing GPO allocation programs.
  • We manage members’ needs daily.
  • Allocations are reviewed continuously and adjusted as needed.


What’s your shipping policy?

There’s no charge to customers for standard shipping. Our regular business office hours are 7:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. Central Standard Time (CT). Orders placed by 6:00 p.m. CT will be shipped the same day.

Unless other arrangements have been made with the customer’s consent, all non-refrigerated IVIG and albumin will ship via ground delivery, averaging two- to three-days arrival time nationwide; all refrigerated and frozen products will be shipped via Next-Day air. Priority service is available on an as-requested basis. For standard ground shipments, delivery is based on distance to the destination. In most instances, standard orders are delivered by 3:00 p.m. Upgrades to an earlier morning delivery time, by 8:30 a.m. or 10:30 a.m., are available for an additional charge.

SPD incurs all shipping fees for standard shipping. Refrigerated and/or frozen orders shipped standard next-day delivery incur no shipping charges.


What about holiday shipping?

Cardinal Health provides advance notification to all customers of any potential changes or interruptions in service, such as holidays and inventories. Cardinal Health ships all orders prepaid-FOB destination.


How do you handle emergencies?

Cardinal Health has no stated order cut-off time for same-day deliveries. We also provide 24/7, on-call customer service in the event of emergencies and issues requiring same-day shipments. Availability of delivery and time needed for ordering is dependent on member facility needs and location. We use multiple carriers that specialize in expedited emergency shipments.

Only shipping charges incurred above and beyond normal standard shipping are passed on to member facilities. Delivery time for same-day deliveries is subject to departing courier or jet service.


How do we find out about shipping delays?

SPD has a dedicated Customer Service team that monitors and tracks outbound shipments every morning and throughout the day. Whenever a carrier notifies us of any delay in delivery, Customer Service immediately notifies member facilities.


Do you have a consignment program?

Every facility has different needs. That’s why we’ll work with your hospital to provide customized options for your individual facility. From inventory levels to payment terms, we’ll ensure you always have an onsite supply of the products you need.

  • Don’t worry about expirations. Your product will always have good dating.
  • Product is invoiced only when inventory is reconciled, after it has been dispensed.
  • All product is sourced directly from the manufacturer for strict supply chain integrity.
  • Program inventory and assay needs are flexible.
  • With product onsite, there’s no need for emergency delivery services.
  • In-stock product means you won’t need to borrow product.
  • Our program cost is reasonable.