Improving Pharmaceutical Services
Helping to ensure that medicines are safe and are prescribed and used appropriately promotes better health outcomes and helps prevent antibiotic resistance. SPS supported drug and therapeutic committees to oversee the implementation of rational medicine use strategies. It also increased the capacity of the GDPA, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and health facilities to support pharmaceutical services.
SPS established the National Drug and Therapeutics Committee (NDTC) and supported similar committees in 17 national and provincial hospitals (six in Kabul, 11 in provinces). The project also promoted the development and use of National Standard Treatment Guidelines for the NSTG-Primary Level. In eight outpatient department wards monitored for three consecutive quarters (April–December 2016), average adherence to the NSTG-Primary Level increased from 44% to 70% for the six most common health conditions (acute watery diarrhea, any diarrhea, simple acute respiratory infection, pneumonia, bronchial asthma, and ischemic heart disease).
The project drafted Standard Treatment Guidelines for the BPHS. Nearly 800 BPHS facilities received at least one supportive supervision visit focused on improving pharmaceutical supply management and rational medicine use. Antibiotic prescribing to outpatients in BPHS facilities decreased from 51% in 2012 to 41% in 2015.
The project designed health messages for radio, television, and print to raise public awareness of antimicrobial resistance and rational medicine use.