While inaugurating the new NatPharm board led by Mrs Ruth Kaseke, Honourable Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr C.G.D.N Chiwenga last Friday urged the board to deliver on its set mandate and ensuring availability of drugs at all the times.
“I need not over-emphasise that as a new Board, you are entrusted to ensure that NatPharm delivers on its mandate.
“Indeed, the mandate of NatPharm is to ensure availability of essential medicines and commodities to support and sustain the health care system,” said Dr Chiwenga.
VP Chiwenga urged NatPharm to consider direct purchase from manufacturers thus by passing the middlemen, a scenario which would result in ensuring timely delivery of medicines and commodities.
“Government expects this Parastatal to devise strategies aimed at ensuring direct procurement of medicines from manufacturers, thereby eliminating middlemen.
“I am confident that this Board will eventually reposition the entity to the expected levels,” said the Vice President.
Dr Chiwenga advised the new NatPharm board to improve its procurement systems in order to enable availability and easy access to medication for members of the public.
“I urge NatPharm as a strategic business unit, to be oriented towards sustainable operations.
“It’s procurement supply chain management systems require urgent improvements, to enable timely and efficient access to medicines and commodities,” said Dr Chiwenga.
In the past there were issues of stealing of drugs and some expiring which became costly to the health delivery system.
“It is prudent that modern and transparent systems are adopted, to minimise pilferage and wastage of medicines and commodities,” said VP Chiwenga.
Dr Chiwenga urged the new board to make sure that all essential medicines are available in a clear departure from what used to happen within the entity before.
“As the management board for this strategic unit, you are expected to execute your duties with utmost diligence and professionalism. Shortage of essential medicines and commodities has been a prevalent challenge, but the new National Health Strategy (NHS) has a clear goal of increasing availability and access to essential medicines and commodities,” said Dr Chiwenga.
In line with the NHS and the National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1), Dr Chiwenga reminded the new NatPharm board that they should also come up with their own strategic plan.
“I expect development and full implementation of a clear strategic plan to guide NatPharm, in line with the vision of the Ministry and Government,” said Dr Chiwenga.