Pharmaceutical Management: Our Impact

Management Sciences for Health (MSH) has been awarded a three-year, $8.6 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to continue and expand its efforts to develop sustainable solutions enabling private drug sellers, many of them women, to help more people access essential medicines in Africa.

An uninterrupted and reliable supply of essential medicines including antiretrovirals (ARVs) remains crucial to the optimum management of HIV infection and other chronic diseases. The availability of accurate information on current stocks enables the estimation of future requirements.

The resistance of microorganisms to medicines used to treat infections caused by bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses – otherwise known as antimicrobial resistance (AMR) – has been on the rise for decades. More specifically, the resistance to tuberculosis (TB) medicines has become a severe problem leading to outbreaks of extremely drug-resistant TB or XDR-TB. Further compounding this problem is the lack of resources and local capacity that exists to address AMR issues throughout the health systems.

In Tanzania, Accredited Drug Dispensing Outlets (ADDO), private drug dispensers, are increasing access to quality pharmaceutical products and services in under-served, often rural areas of Tanzania through the use of regulation, training, and supervision. The program, through support from the Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA), focuses on improving training and dispensing practices at retail outlets and improving regulatory enforcement to assure product quality.

Nyamata hospital in Rwanda successfully cut down its quarterly medicine procurement budget by 2.7 million Rwandese Francs (12% of the budget) in a period of six months with support from USAID-funded Management Sciences for Health's Strengthening Pharmaceutical Systems (SPS) Program.

Liberian pharmacyAfter completing an assessment of the Liberian pharmaceutical supply management system, the USAID-funded Strengthening Pharmaceutical Systems Program (SPS) Program, led by Management Sciences for Health (MSH), in collaboration with the USAID/DELIVER Project identified the lack of skills and capacity to accurately order, receive, dispense, and quantify medicines.To address these problems, SPS trained county pharmacists in Liberia on how to correctly implement the pharmaceutical supply management system and to build the necessary skills to rollout the program within their counti

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In Ethiopia, 85 percent of the country’s 73.9 million people live in isolated rural areas, bringing significant challenges to HIV & AIDS testing and treatment programs. Yet despite these obstacles, the country has made significant strides. Within two years, the number of clients on active antiretroviral treatment tripled from 50,000 to 167,271.

On Wednesday, July 21, 2010, Dr. Edmund Rutta, Country Program Manager for the Strengthening Pharmaceutical Systems (SPS) Program, presented at the Management Sciences for Health (MSH), Global Health Council, and PATH Congressional Briefing entitled "Reaching Women and Children with Innovative Technologies." The event was held in conjunction with Representatives Albio Sires (NJ), Brian Baird (WA), Betty McCollum (MN), Barbara Lee (CA), Adam Smith (WA), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX), and Jim McDermott (WA) to a full standing room of over 100 guests, including two Members of Congress. Dr.

Dispensing medication with bare hands is a global issue. Despite numerous informal campaigns, the bare hand counting of medicines remains fairly common in Africa, Central Asia, South East Asia, and several Latin American and Caribbean countries. Even if medicines are of good quality, they are often counted out with bare hands. As a result, medicines can become contaminated and may not work properly, leading to possibly serious health implications. A comprehensive approach to addressing the challenges of dispensing medications is needed to counter this practice.


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