SIAPS Supports the Republic of Uzbekistan in Conducting an Assessment of the TB Pharmaceutical Management System
To ensure successful treatment and prevention of TB, countries should have strong pharmaceutical management systems to ensure uninterrupted supply of quality anti-TB medicines. Acknowledging shortcomings of the existing TB pharmaceutical management system (TB PM), Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Health (MOH) requested that SIAPS provide assistance and conduct a countrywide TB PM assessment. SIAPS, in collaboration with the WHO Country Office and the TB PM Working Group (created by MOH), conducted the assessment. During March–June 2014, partners developed a comprehensive protocol for the assessment which included methodology, indicators measuring different aspects of the TB PM, data collection forms, and a detailed action plan. In July 2014, SIAPS conducted a training of trainers for the data collection team leaders, who subsequently trained 20 health professionals on the assessment methodology and data collection. In July–August 2014, 5 groups collected data in 35 TB treatment facilities throughout 5 regions (oblasts). They interviewed 714 TB patients and more than 100 TB health care workers, reviewed more than 1000 patient treatment cards and assessed 65 pharmacies and drug stores in medical facilities. The collected data was entered into the Excel tool created by the SIAPS team. The data is currently being analyzed, and partners are in the process of developing a report with assessment results. This comprehensive assessment of the TB PM is the first of its kind, not only in Uzbekistan, but in the Central Asian region in general. The assessment will provide clear evidence to MOH for setting priorities and planning interventions for strengthening the TB PM.