Drug procurement strategies must allow for uncertainties about the quality of the drugs that will be delivered, delivery dates and the price that will be paid. These uncertainties are largely due to the strategic behaviour of the suppliers. Various procedures for procurement (adjudication, tendering, mutual agreement, direct purchasing) are legally defined. These procedures seek to preserve the interests of the purchasing agency in relation to suppliers and in relation to its own procurement staff. The protection of collective public interests in relation to procurement personnel is examined in the next section. Here we examine procurement procedures in terms of the economic strategies they imply.
Of several possible strategies of procurement, we here discuss three simplified patterns found in practice: blind confidence, systematic distrust and cooperation. Strategies in reality are more complex and are often implicit.