Uganda’s Health Supply Chain Solutions Challenge Winners Announced

Winners of the Health Supply Chain Solutions Challenge will now work with a team of experts to develop, pilot, monitor, evaluate and ultimately scale up their ideas for strengthening Uganda's health supply chain. Photo credits: MSH

Three winners of the Health Supply Chain Solutions Challenge were named during Uganda’s National Health Supply Chain Week (July 26–30, 2021). The winners were selected from a pool of more than 130 concepts presented to the competition’s judges. The Challenge, which called for bold new ideas to strengthen Uganda’s supply chain and improve access to medicines, is an initiative of Management Sciences for Health (MSH) under the USAID Uganda Strengthening Supply Chain Systems (SSCS) Activity and partners.

Despite recent progress, health facilities in Uganda continue to experience stock-outs of essential medicines, which limits people’s ability to access quality health services. The COVID-19 pandemic has further strained the country’s national health supply chain, including medicines, vaccines, and other essential supplies.

Speaking during the pitch event, Dr. Henry Mwebesa, the Uganda Ministry of Health’s Director General for Health Services, said, “The government of Uganda, through the President, is committed to playing a critical role in growing and sustaining innovations. An example is the efforts that have supported innovations to address the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Dr. Mwebesa highlighted the importance of sustainability and said that the Ministry of Health would integrate the innovations within its existing programs.

Challenge winners will work with a team of subject matter experts to develop, pilot, and ultimately scale up their innovations. Each winner will receive a share of USD 50,000 worth of technical and financial support. 

Winner: Trackmed led by Eric Mujjona

[Eric Mujjona, team lead from Trackmed, is congratulated by Dr. Neville Okuna Oteba, Commissioner, Pharmacy and Natural Medicines at the Ministry of Health.]Eric Mujjona, team lead from Trackmed, is congratulated by Dr. Neville Okuna Oteba, Commissioner, Pharmacy and Natural Medicines at the Ministry of Health.

Trackmed uses a new type of data encryption to trace medicines throughout the supply chain— from the central warehouse all the way to the patient—while providing real-time data on delivery and use of medical supplies.

First runner up: SIGNALYTIC Uganda led by Elvis Mugabi

[Elvis Mugabi, team lead for SIGNALYTIC.] Elvis Mugabi, team lead for SIGNALYTIC.

SIGNALYTIC offers integrated technologies to digitize medicine inventory information and network system users. The novel platform displays inventory data across health facilities and is solar powered with uninterrupted power provisions.

Second runner up: BioGenics led by Dr. Tony Hasahya 

[Dr. Tony Hasahya, team lead for BioGenics.] Dr. Tony Hasahya, team lead for BioGenics.

BioGenics manufactures KN95 and three-ply face masks using machines made with locally sourced materials.

The Challenge was launched by Management Sciences for Health, Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment, and Uganda Healthcare Federation under the USAID/Uganda Strengthening Supply Chain Systems (SSCS) Activity in conjunction with the United Nations Population Fund (Uganda) and Outbox Hub.