New policy to reduce waste in medical sector

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CS Health Sicily  Kariuki. Photo/File

The Ministry of Health is working on a policy targeted to bring down wastage, losses and other barriers which hinder access to medical supplies.

The Health Cabinet Secretary (CS), Sicily Kariuki said that the government is working to address the existing weaknesses in all components of supply chain cycle namely selection, forecasting and quantification, procurement, distribution, storage, inventory control, information management and appropriate use by both health workers and consumers.

“We are among the countries in the region with robust pharmaceutical policy, essential lists, clinical guideline protocols, procedures on various aspects for commodity management, medical supply and many more,” Kariuki noted.

The CS said the implementation plan contained proposed actions to be effected alongside others namely listing of all non-pharmaceuticals (medical devices) by the regulator, annual licensure for all medical devices (non-pharmaceuticals) distributors, review and update of all the current essential commodity lists, development of pricing policy for goods and services at the county and hospital levels.

Speaking during the launch of the implementation plan for the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) report for August 2018 on the review of systems, policies and practices in the pricing of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical supplies in the public health sector, the CS noted that the role of pharmaceuticals and non-pharmaceuticals in provision of medical care could not be over emphasized.

Kariuki added that access to quality and affordable medical supplies was an indicator of a functioning health care system and crucial for Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

The Council of Governors’ Health committee Chairman, Dr. Mohammed Kuti who is also the Isiolo governor said county governments were committed to improve access and provide quality services to the people.

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Dr. Kuti acknowledged efforts by stakeholders in the development of programs to improve the quality of lives of Kenyans.

“The development of this action plan goes a long way towards ensuring that we strengthen our health care delivery systems and establish mechanisms to identify and collectively deal with any gaps, weaknesses so that we can effectively mitigate against wastage of our resources,” he said.

He noted that counties would focus on saving costs and ensuring value for money to increase coverage of services, scale up proven interventions and work towards reversing negative health indicators.

“This action plan will see county governments interrogate how systems are currently working and take action in consultation with all the stakeholders mentioned in the report,” he said.

The Director Field Services at the Anti-corruption Commission, Vincent Okong’o said the EACC act 2011, mandated them to monitor the practices and procedures of public bodies to detect and secure revision of methods of work that may be conducive to corrupt practices.

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