Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services Program: Our Impact

Health extension worker Lemlem Worku gives Zara Ahmed amoxicillin antibiotics for her 10 month old baby.Photo credit: UNICEF Ethiopia / CC BY-NC-ND

Devex has reported on the role of well-trained health workers in the fight against antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Increasing levels of AMR — a result of the misuse of drugs, poor-quality medication and improper prescriptions, among other factors — is a threat not only to people’s health, but also to the global economy, poverty levels, and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

A technician tests a child for malaria at a health center in Kinshasa, DRC.Photo Credit: Aubrey Clark

The USAID-funded Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) Program, led by MSH, recently published the results of its activities in eight countries (Angola, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, Kenya, Guinea, Mali, and South Sudan) to control malaria.

 {Photo credit: Wezi Tjaronda (MSH/SIAPS Namibia)}Pharmacist in charge of the Facility Electronic Stock Card (FESC) at Oshakati Hospital, Tesema Zelalem (seated) shows the US Ambassador to Namibia, Thomas Daughton (right) and Senior Pharmacist of the hospital, Mesele Walellign a print out of available medicines in the pharmacy, from the FESC computer on July 13, 2017.Photo credit: Wezi Tjaronda (MSH/SIAPS Namibia)

The U.S. Ambassador to Namibia, H.E. Thomas Daughton, visited a hospital and clinic in the Oshana region of Namibia last week to unveil a new electronic stock card, an innovation that has greatly improved service delivery in the country.

 {Photo credit: SIAPS Namibia}ART Pharmacy in Oshikuku District Hospital, Omusati Region, Namibia.Photo credit: SIAPS Namibia

In a major advance against the spread of HIV, Namibia has approved the use of Truvada to prevent HIV infection.

What is the evidence base for strengthening and sustaining responsive and resilient pharmaceutical systems? The USAID-funded Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) Program, led by MSH, is pleased to issue an open and global call for case studies of sustained improvements in pharmaceutical systems in low-and middle-income countries. The case studies should demonstrate how pharmaceutical systems strengthening strategies and actions have improved access to and appropriate use of pharmaceutical prodcucts and services for better health outcomes. 

{Photo credit: NEX Noticias de Ciencia / CC BY-SA}Photo credit: NEX Noticias de Ciencia / CC BY-SA

Devex has reported on the potential impact of US foreign aid cuts on effective programs for combating drug-resistant TB in Ukraine. Devex looks at strides that have been made since 2008 with the e-TB Manager—a web-based information management tool needed for TB control. The first digital health tool to be adopted by the government nationwide, the tool was implemented as part of the MSH-led, USAID-funded program, Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS). The U.S. government has announced proposed cuts of about a third to foreign assistance spending.

{Photo Credit: Michael Paydos/MSH}Photo Credit: Michael Paydos/MSH

Tuberculosis is one of the top causes of death globally. In many of the countries most affected by this disease, drug sellers—also known as private pharmacies—are the first point of contact for people seeking health care. By some estimates, about 50 percent of TB patients’ first contact with the health system is from a private pharmacy.

'Good Morning Namibia' interviewed MSH Country Director Evans Sagwa about the Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) project, funded by USAID and implemented by MSH. In the interview, Sagwa spoke about the importance of strong pharmaceutical systems and SIAPS' impact on the country. Among other topics, Sagwa discussed SIAPS' work to improve the availability and accessibility of medicines, fight against HIV and AIDS, and strengthen the health system in Namibia.

 {Photo Credit: Abraham Ayuen/MSH}Yohana sits with his mother near a pharmacy at Al Sabah Children's Hospital in Juba, South Sudan.Photo Credit: Abraham Ayuen/MSH

Six-year-old Yohana Peter clutched a bottle of mango juice as he waited for his medication outside a pharmacy at Al Sabah Children's Hospital in Juba, South Sudan. Seated next to his mother on a metal bench, Yohana looked anxious. "He had fever and stomach pain. I gave him some medicines at home, but his condition continued to worsen, so I brought him to the hospital to be seen by a doctor," said Asunta Wasuk, Yohana's mother.

 {Photo Credit: Mohammad Hossain/MSH}Tama with her daughter Sangita, who received treatment for potentially fatal, pneumonia-related complications.Photo Credit: Mohammad Hossain/MSH

Tama, a resident of Parokhali village in the Khulna district of Bangladesh, was devastated when her 15-day-old daughter was diagnosed with pneumonia-related complications and needed treatment, including immediate oxygen support. Following instructions from the local doctor, she and her husband rushed their newborn to Khulna Shishu Hospital, situated eight kilometers from her village. Thanks to the oxygen supply system that had been recently installed at the hospital, baby Sangita received a steady flow of medical oxygen and recovered.

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